Do the words "illegal immigrant" conjure up George Orwell's dark and dystopian 1984?
They do for CNN contributor Charles Garcia, a longtime politico and CEO, who thinks using the term "illegal immigrant" is the perfect example of 1984's lesson on the power of words to conjure up "political implications that spread in speakers' minds like a poison." In Garcia's opinion, "illegal immigrants" is just such a poison. And a racial slur to boot.
"When you label someone an 'illegal alien' or 'illegal immigrant' or just plain 'illegal,'" Garcia writes, "you are effectively saying the individual, as opposed to the actions the person has taken, is unlawful." He joins others who believe that the terms are in fact code for racial hatred.
Garcia applauds the recent US Supreme Court's decision in the Arizona case to avoid "illegal immigrant" and similar phrases in its official ruling, and hopes the move is indicative of a broader societal trend to get away from them for good.
this is a bunch of bs illegal immigrant is no more a racial slur then saying someone is a blonde or a red head.... wtf are we suppose to call them they are not u.s. citizens so we cant call them that.....
Europeans came over here, stole land from the Native Americans, and then from Mexico, killed off entire populations of wildlife and destroyed much of this land's natural beauty. We allowed politicians to sell out our country, and now they are trying to brainwash us through the media into believing that it is all the illegal immigrants faults for coming over here and working harder than us for less money.
So no, I wouldn't call it a racial slur, but yes it is being pushed as a political agenda and it is highly offensive.
I'm going to put you down for "immigrant" as your preferred label for people who have broken lawful border control laws of a sovereign nation by crossing a border in defiance of lawful border control laws of a sovereign nation.
I prefer "illegal immigrant". And I guess it is for a political reason. My political reason is stopping the violence on the border and throughout Mexico. It's only a part of my whole position regarding relations with Mexico.
What's your political reason? Was I right in my previous post?
I am replying about the violence on the border....Don't care about the term illegal immigrant.... Violence in the border is there due to Americans loving their drugs so much, even more than human beings from other lands.
the biggest causes of the violence down in Mexico is our failed drug policies. It has been proven, and there was even a CATO summit in DC last year about this. The reason they outlawed Mary Jane in the first place is because they were trying to get rid of all the mexicans who came here and built our country up in the 1930's and then decided to stay. I learned this watching the history channel special on illicit drugs. So your arguments don't make sense when you forgo "politics" (what you are supposed to believe) and turn to history.
No it is not a racial slur(?). I was taught that there is no such thing as a stupid question but after reading this, I think they were wrong! Their immigrants and their here illegally. Therefor they are "illegal immigrants"! Sheesh!!
2) Undocumented Workers"- Label used by cruel people who value "labor below open market levels for citizens and legal residents" more than they value human beings. They want the border to stay broken and the cheap labor coming. Both sides are guilty.
If "illegal immigrant" is a racial slur, then so too is "legal immigrant." And if these are racial slurs, then just what should we call people who immigrate here illegally. And just which race are we slurring since illegal immigrants are made up of many races from many continents? With this type of logic, "unwed mother," even, "jay walker," could be considered racial slurs. Dumb!
here is the deal, back in the day(1500's) we started sneaking into the country a few at a time. we went along with native rule and our numbers grew. when we finally had enough of our own people in place, we screwed over the native american and stole their country. what goes around comes around.
No. I'm not insulting the person, I'm not even insulting their actions. There is nothing disparaging in the word immigrant or alien. The term illegal is simply a definition of that immigrants or aliens legal status as a non-citizen. This is ridiculous. It's simply an attempt to keep people from discussing the issue in blunt terms. Liberals know that if you control the words people use use can control the argument. This is the same as trying to control the "hate rhetoric" where we cant use words like target because of their connotations. It might send someone over the edge. So do quick pulses of light used in video games and tv commercials. Give me a break. IF you are here without being a natural born or properly documented citizen or resident alien, you are an ILLEGAL Alien or ILLEGAL immigrant. IF as an illegal, you find this wording offensive or it hurts your feelings, then you are free to leave the country you don't belong in.
The words illegal and immigrant have no racial connotation whatsoever. So, I guess it depends on how overly sensitive one is. Some people just look for things to express feigned righteous indignation over. Get over it!
It's not a racial slur, but it is incredibly polarizing and inflammatory language. It's a phrase that has encouraged distaste towards immigrants, regardless of whether they entered the country legally or not.
The phrase "Illegal Immigrant" is what George Carlin would have called the evolution of language. First it was 'aliens,' next 'illegals,' now 'illegal immigrants.' It's a way of dumbing down the words, or phrase, to dilute their actual meaning. Here is an example:
WWI: Soldiers came home with what they called "Shell shock." Very brutal and to the point. WWII: A new phrase was used for the same ailment: "Battle Fatigue." Longer words, less emotion. Korea: Now it was stretched out even more: "Operational Exhaustion." No longer does emotion even exist in the phrase, nor does it sound scary, dangerous or harmful like it should. Vietnam/Post-Nam Era: This was the straw that broke the proverbial camel's back: "Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder." That phrase is responsible for just as much injustice as 'illegal immigrants.' It's such a benign phrase that no one even pays attention to it anymore.
The reason these two examples occurred is because Americans are afraid of just about everything. Because of this fact, they find they must shelter themselves from the real world.'Shell shock' sounds scary,'PTSD' is just some letters.'Aliens' sounds like an invasion,'illegal immigrants' makes it sound like the flow is being stemmed.
Want some more examples? -'Toilet paper' is now 'bathroom tissue.' -'Sneakers' are now known as 'running shoes.' -'Fake/false teeth'? Nah. Those are 'dental appliances.' -'Medicine' is now 'Medication.' -'Dump's are now 'landfill's. - Shitty 'motels' are called 'motor lodges.' -'Used cars'--> 'Previously owned vehicles.' -'Riots' have become 'civil disorders.' -'Strikes' are nothing more than 'job actions.' -'Zoos' are 'wildlife parks.' -'Drug addiction' is a 'substance abuse.'
Sure, you can make the argument that language evolves into what the speakers require. A case of that would be the word 'retard.' Nowadays, you would never call someone with a 'mental disability,' retarded.(See that one too?) But you would call someone who does something stupid, retarded. But again, that boils down to fear. You fear something, so you insult it.'Retarded' has much more emotion than 'stupid' or 'dumb.'
Oh, and this isn't just the States. But that's just the country I chose to use. Same can be applied to any English speaking country, and I feel safe assuming, many countries with other languages.
Well said. But I still don't have a problem calling them illegal aliens or Illegal immigrants. Undocumented workers is just BS to make it sound like they are contributing to society and just messed up their paperwork. More BS. Can't call them aliens as their are many legal resident aliens. i suppose if it makes anyone feel better i could call them criminals or criminal aliens or criminal immigrants. Or better yet, let's go with CRIMMIGRANTS. That's evolution of language.
I don't give a damn how sensitive people want to feel about me calling people what they are. I do it all the time, even on this site. People who are living in a country, but are not citizens of that country (born there, naturalized or otherwise), are aliens.
You forgot my favorite... War, Police Action, and Kinetic Military Action
I agree with your deconstructions of language but I disagree with you on what is "polarizing and inflammatory language".
I find the use of the word "immigrant" and the phrase "undocumented worker" to be the polarizing and inflammatory labels... Polarizing and inflammatory to citizens and legal residents.
About the "alien" label. I am with you too that "alien" is a correct description, I just think "immigrant" is more accurate and without the baggage of "foreigner" or "other/not of us", that is inferred with the word.
I guess we'll have to agree to disagree on some details, but I like your critical thinking about the topic.