A group of professional journalist (if you want to call them that), is looking to ban the use of the word "illegal alien" in favor of "undocumented worker". They say that many latinos and Mexicans find the term "illegal alien" offensive. Boo Hoo. Another fine example of political correctness gone crazy. Is it just me or does it seem like people in the world are getting awfully thin skinned? We can't even hardly say anything now that someone doesn't take offense too. I really wish the people of the world would grow some stones. As far as I can tell, the term "illegal alien" is a accurate description of what a person that is not legally in our country or any country actually is. If we go to Mexico without going through the proper channels, we'll be just as illegal there as a hispanic would be here... except if we do it, we DO go to one of those lovely Mexican jails.
The Society of Professional Journalists
asked this week that the term ‘illegal immigrant’ ends use in the
lexicons of newsrooms nationwide. In short this banded-together-group of
‘professional’ journalists want to ban a word from use.
The pronouncement was made in the SPJ’s magazine ‘The Quill’ and is a
product of the 109 year-old organization’s ‘Diversity Committee’.
In an article titled ‘The Constitution and use of ‘illegal immigrant’
journalist Leo E. Laurence makes his case against the term to “remain
faithful to the principles of our U.S. Constitution.
The author notes that SPJ’s Diversity Committee met during a 2010 convention in Las
Vegas and agreed to a year long educational campaign to inform and
sensitize journalists on the best language to use when writing and
reporting on undocumented immigrants.
Third paragraph into the story Laurence writes, “Some believe
the phrase illegal alien originated with fiery, anti-immigrant groups
along the U.S.-Mexico border, such as the Minutemen. Gradually, the
phrase along with illegal immigrant seeped into common usage. It is now
even used by some network TV newscasters. Yet it remains offensive to
many Latinos, and especially Mexicans, and to the fundamentals of
Actually the Minuteman project began in April of 2005, when citizens including co-founder Jim Gilchrist began
what they termed ‘a citizens Neighborhood Watch on our border.’
The notion to ban the term ‘illegal immigrant’, however, is contradictory
to the present edition(s) of the Associated Press (AP) stylebook.
Considered as the bible of newspapering the AP Stylebook (the Herald’s 2006 copy
anyhow) reads: ‘illegal immigrant: used to describe those who have
entered the country illegally, it is the preferred term, rather than
illegal alien or undocumented worker.’
So what is the given reason by the SPJ for the sea change of accurate descriptive language into Orwellian Newspeak?
Feelings of course, the feelings of illegal immigrants (cited by the SPJ mainly
as people of Mexican descent) who are or might be offended by the term.
Well.... HMMM they are illegal and your right they are not immigrants... That part is true sooo Would illegal aliens be more appropriate?? I am sure that still wouldn't be the intent of those trying to change it to make it more anti hostile to those who are in fact here against the will of the way immigrants are chosen would they not?
The very fact the language has changed in the last decade from illegal aliens to illegal immigrants is an example of the incrementalism in the change of the English language which the mostly liberal public schools started a while back.
More specific to this debate would be the actual definition of the word alien...
Yet in the case of undocumented workers are in fact pulling resources from those who became documented. Granted.. as some on the liberal side would comment some are actually paying taxes ( on illegal social security numbers ( Called Fraud last time I looked) But the numbers which can be debated, as we really do not know how many cross the border each year not through a U.S. Customs station. This would be called (illegal entry) according to U.S. Customs regulations Which would get yourself or me thrown out of the country U.S. citizen or not. Anyone who wants to parse words for the sake of making an illegal activity more palatable should be careful what they wish for I would think.
I think "illegal immigrant" or "illegal alian" are both acceptable terms for somone who enters a foreign country without permission.
An " immigrant" is someone who enters a foreign country with intentions of staying.
An "alien" is someone who is an unnaturalized foreign resident of a country.
The more immigrants we accept into the United States as permanent residents, the more we will see this pressure to abandon old negative references to immigration in favor of diversity and political correctness. Many documented immigrants enter professions, seek citizenship and become active on diversity committees that influence decision makers in our country. As our population ages and younger people take the helm, Americans will become comfortable with this as the status quo. It may take a couple of generations to erase the negativism, but it is coming.
Also, undocumented immigrants (illegal aliens or whatever) no longer seem afraid to come out and protest in the streets for their "rights." They are encouraged by our liberal media and their brethren who have found their place in the U.S.
I'm very uncomfortable with this, but once I and my contemporaries are dead, it won't matter. Our country will have entered a new phase in its existence.
Here's a more recent story on the subject... now they are suggesting that the term illegal immigrant or illegal alien is not constitutional, because only a court of law can determine who is in the country illegally. While technically, that might be right, it is a silly stance. Basically, that would be like having a video of someone killing someone but because its before his time in court that he isn't guilty. This group of journalist need to stop wasting their time and move on to something else.
SAN DIEGO (CBS) — A national group of journalists says the U.S. media should stop using the terms “illegal immigrant” and “illegal alien” because only a court of law — not reporters — can determine who is in the country illegally.
The Diversity Committee of the Society of Professional Journalists ... says its goal is to “inform and sensitize” members of the American media about how “offensive” the commonly-used terms are to Latinos.
Claiming the language likely “originated with fiery, anti-immigrant groups along the U.S.-Mexico border, such as the Minutemen”, the group has embarked on a nationwide campaign to suggest the preferred phrasing of “undocumented worker”.
Diversity Committee member Leo Laurence argues that those who have entered the country without official approval but have not obtained citizenship should be called “undocumented workers” or “undocumented immigrants”.
“This is not about being politically correct,” Laurence says, but rather seeking to “minimize harm” when reporting — one of the major tenets of SPJ’s code of ethics acknowledged by many journalists around the nation.
The group asserts that citizens and non-citizens alike enjoy the protections afforded by the U.S. Constitution guaranteeing innocence of any crime until proven guilty in a court of law, contending that a judge is the only person qualified to declare any person or action “illegal”.
According to its most recent style guide, the Associated Press still appears to prefer “illegal immigrant” over “undocumented worker.”
The AP Stylebook created its entry on “illegal immigrant” in 2004, in response to renewed debate over border security and the enforcement of immigration laws after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks,” AP’s deputy standards editor David Minthorn wrote in an e-mail.
“Together, the terms describe a person who resides in a country unlawfully by residency or citizenship requirements. Alternatives like undocumented worker, illegal alien or illegals lack precision or may have negative connotations. Illegal immigrant, on the other hand, is accurate and neutral for news stories.”
SPJ delegates say they will consider a full resolution at their upcoming 2011 national convention in Las Vegas.