I have to answer Danielle Arreola's recent letter (Empire, Dec. 30). Although I'm sure Mr. Guillen is everything his family and friends have stated, let's look at the facts. Mr. Guillen has put his family at risk by making a conscious decision to stay in the United States illegally while building a life. The consequences for being here illegally are not heartless, hateful acts. They are the natural consequences of breaking a law. I am sure there are communities all around this country who lost wonderful people for the very reason Mr. Guillen is leaving. Has anyone thought of the far-reaching effects of these folks' actions?
The frustration we find with our government looking for someone to blame, the sorrow of the community seeing this person leave, the family left behind, the business who has to replace a good worker, and so on. If being a good person was the only requirement to gain citizenship in our country (or most other countries, for that fact) well, you know the rest.
I admire you for caring about the Guillen family and saying so publicly, but take this experience as a lesson in responsibility. I must admit, I find it is hard for me to respect people who disregard our nation's laws, expect special treatment when caught breaking those laws, and then blame our government for their predicament. We can only hope Mr. Guillen will find a way to legally enter our country the next time.