The United States of America is a land of opportunity and of laws.

America is a beacon of freedom, hope and opportunity that draws the people of the world to our borders. And as a nation founded by immigrants, we should continue to embrace the many individuals who wait in line legally to work hard and contribute to our society. However, we should not provide amnesty to those who break and defy our laws and enter the United States illegally to do harm to our country or our citizens. That status quo is unacceptable and we must reform our immigration system so that it encourages legal immigration, as opposed to illegal immigration, it must address the children brought here with their parents illegally, those who have committed crimes, those who serve in our military as a pathway to citizenship, and potentially a guest worker program.

We lead the world because, unique among nations, we draw our people — our strength — from every country and every corner of the world. And by doing so, as president Ronald Reagan once said, “we continuously renew and enrich our nation.” But this must be done fairly, equitably and legally.

It’s because we love our country, we must embrace our laws and secure our border by using both physical as well as electronic barriers. While every person should be treated fairly and humanly, we should also ensure that those who come to our country illegally do not receive the benefits reserved for American citizens.