On Euphemisms and Wishful Thinking

Astute readers of the Center’s daily immigration news roundup may have caught this nugget, as item 12 in the December 24 edition: “No Longer Illegal – Good Morning America Drops ‘i-Word’

The article goes on to say, “The ABC news show Good Morning America has dropped use of the term ‘illegal’ when describing immigrants in the country who have no documents to establish their legal residency. Earlier this week, anchors for the popular morning program opted instead for ‘undocumented Americans.'”

I met this “news” with equal parts dismay and hilarity. Undocumented Americans? Really? What color is the sky on their world? Last time I checked, the Constitution provided a bright line between who is entitled to call himself an American, at least in the sense we ordinarily use the word, and who is an alien. And if they intended the word “American” to be applied generically (as in North Americans, Central Americans, South Americans) then they have, in their rush to establish new frontiers of political correctness, inadvertently slighted the millions of illegal aliens who are from Africa, Asia, or Europe.

It is important to note that Good Morning America is a part of the ABC News Division. When did they abandon their journalistic responsibility to be truthful and impartial in their reporting, and instead join in the debate on what is desirable where immigration is concerned? What gives a news program the right to so blatantly attempt to influence public opinion in that debate?

This is the worst kind of liberal elitist patronization: it assumes that being American forms the pinnacle of every illegal alien’s thinking – after all, they aspire to be just like us, right?

Nope, sorry guys, but it ain’t so. Not even every legal alien aspires to be an American. Consider: there are hundreds of thousands – nay, millions – of longtime lawful resident aliens in this country who have made that decision. How do I know? Simple. Because they have chosen not to naturalize. I am of two minds about this. Part of me is affronted that they avail themselves of the blessings and liberties that attend to living and working in the U.S. without taking that last important step toward assimilation. The other part of me understands completely, because I would find it extraordinarily difficult to renounce my American citizenship were I to live elsewhere. Not just as a security blanket, but because it forms such an integral part of my roots, and who I am.

Meantime, Good Morning America continues, along with many of its open-borders compatriots, to muddy that very clear, bright line between citizenship and alienage. It unacceptably cheapens what it means to be an American, and is to be deplored.

I have one last comment: I am stunned that Hispanically Speaking News, the source of the story and a site which labels itself as an independent source of news for Latinos, had the audacity, in its headline, to describe “illegal” as the “i-word”, implicitly equating it with the “n-word”. Every African American, indeed every American of any kind, should be outraged at that, minimizing as it does our country’s deplorable history of slavery and long struggle toward racial equality.

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