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Newly crowned Miss California Arianna Afsar is staunchly anti-amnesty for undocumented immigrants.
The UCLA sophomore is staunchly anti-amnesty for undocumented immigrants.
"I think that people who want to be a United States citizen need to come over here legally in order to get the privileges that every American receives," said the 18 year-old, during a webcam interview with NBCLA.
Afsar's own father is an immigrant from Bangladesh, who helped bring three relatives to the U.S legally.
"It ended up taking him 10 years, but he did it legally," said Afsar. "I don't think that if you are close to the border that you have the right to be given the rights of a United States citizen."
Afsar believes all immigrants should follow the same legal process as her father.
She was crowned Miss California in Fresno on July 10.
"I was completely shocked," recalls Afsar. "I'm definitely ready for the job, but I'm still a bit shocked."
Afsar should have no problem with national attention. The San Diego native was in the semi-finals of "American Idol," season eight.
Originally a judge's favorite, Afsar was praised as being "cute as a button." But her rendition of Abba's "The Winner Takes it All" prompted judge Simon Cowell to call her "absolutely terrible." Soon after, she was eliminated.
Afsar used her singing talent and her passion for helping the elderly to win the Miss California crown.
She created the "Adopt-A-Grandfriend" program in 2005, which aims at providing companionship to often lonely nursing home residents.
Afsar will take her platform, singing talents and poise to the Miss America pageant in January 2011.