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OC HIGH: STUDENT NEWS AND VIEWS : inline : Election Issues

November 04, 1994

For Orange County high school students who have turned 18, Tuesday's election will be their first--and what a complicated election it is.

Generating a great deal of attention and controversy on high school campuses, as well as in the community, is Proposition 187. If enacted and upheld by the courts, Proposition 187 would, among other things, bar the children of illegal immigrants from attending public schools.

The debate has been aired in high school newspapers and has prompted walkouts on some campuses.

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The proposition has opponents and supporters at most schools. At Garden Grove High School, OC High correspondent Catherine Drummond talked with students on each side of the issue.

"I think it's unfair that those who illegally immigrated to the U.S., which is a crime, should be rewarded with health or education benefits," junior Daniel Kim, 16, said. "People who live here pay taxes, and the money should go to a worthy cause like funding schools or other things instead of giving benefits to people from other countries who illegally live here."

On the pro side was senior Janet Perez, 18, who said: "I feel that it's unfair because many people come over here to make a better life for themselves. They don't just come here to take everyone's money--they also try to make their own (money), and to do that they have no choice but to start at the bottom."

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Another issue of interest to many students is Proposition 188, which would reverse a decade-long trend in California by mandating the repeal of all local smoking bans and instituting a single, far looser, statewide smoking policy.

It is designed to circumvent a new law specifically aimed at blocking minors' access to cigarettes and would repeal local bans on vending machine sales in some cities. It would allow billboard ads 500 feet from schools--the distance at which they are designed to be read. The initiative was devised by and is being promoted by cigarette manufacturers.

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