AP banishes ‘illegal’ and ‘undocumented’ immigrants

11 thoughts on “AP banishes ‘illegal’ and ‘undocumented’ immigrants”

  1. I like your discussion of the “illegal immigrant” issue, PT, and I agree that the meaning of the term is clear, despite its technical incorrectness. And speaking of that, isn’t the problem the same as the one that is avoided by using the term, “alleged” relative to criminals? Er, excuse me, alleged criminals. In other words, even though there are 11 million people living in the country illegally (or is it 14 million?), most of them haven’t been officially tried and found guilty of that offense and therefore shouldn’t, I suppose, be captioned as though they had.

    “The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.” ― William Shakespeare, King Henry VI, Part 2

    1. Journalists are taught early to always say “alleged” to protect against being sued for slander/libel if the person named is later found to be innocent. It depends on whether the subject is a named individual(s) or a group of unnamed people. When you start naming names or have identifiable individuals involved, you’d better be using the disclaimer. When you refer to “illegal immigrants” in general, you are specifying those immigrants who are here illegally, not all immigrants — a distinction many activists don’t seem to recognize. There are, as you note, opportunistic lawyers around every corner, and we’ve become a very litigious society.

  2. As a member of the consensus, it is indeed a politically correct and silly distinction without a difference. Nobody is any longer responsible for anything and don’t deserve labels that describe them exactly.

... and that's my two cents