Research
Print

GOP Debate Puts National Spotlight On Fox's Use Of "Illegals" Slur

September 23, 2011 7:33 pm ET — 96 Comments

At the Fox News-Google GOP presidential debate, co-moderator Chris Wallace used the pejorative term "illegals" to refer to undocumented immigrants and read a question from the public that used the term, as well. Journalists have called on the media to stop using the term "illegals," but Fox's "straight news" shows use it consistently nonetheless.

Please upgrade your flash player. The video for this item requires a newer version of Flash Player. If you are unable to install flash you can download a QuickTime version of the video.

EMBED

Wallace Uses Term "Illegals" Twice Himself, Asks Question From Public That Uses It Three Times

Wallace Tells Romney, "You Vetoed Legislation To Provide Interstate Tuition Rates To The Children Of Illegals." From the debate:

WALLACE: Governor Romney, I want to continue a conversation that you had with Governor Perry in the last debate. In Massachusetts, you vetoed legislation to provide in-state tuition rates to the children of illegals. Governor Perry, of course, signed the Texas DREAM Act to do exactly that.

But what about Governor Perry's argument that it's better to get these kids an education and to get them jobs than to consign them just to being a burden on the state? [Fox News, Fox News-Google Presidential Debate, 9/22/11]

Question Chosen For Inclusion In Debate Uses "Illegals" Three Times. From the debate:

WALLACE: Governor Perry, I'm going to ask you a question, so you don't need to respond to him, because you're going to get a full minute to answer your question, which is on directly this point. You're the candidate whose name, by a wide margin, came up most often in the questions being submitted to all of you candidates about immigration.

Dave Hollenbeck of Arizona sent this: "To date, it appears that you have not tried to stop the illegals from coming. We have high unemployment and a considerable amount of jobs going to illegals. Are you going to exert an effort to stop the abuse of U.S. citizens by illegals?" [Fox News, Fox News-Google Presidential Debate, 9/22/11]

Wallace: "More Than 16,000 Children Of Illegals" Paid In-State Tuition In Texas Last Year. From the debate: 

WALLACE: Now, last year, more than 16,000 children of illegals, young people in Texas, took advantage of your in-state tuition rate. Speak to that issue. And just, generally, how do you feel being criticized by a number of these other candidates on the stage for being too soft on immigration, sir? [Fox News, Fox News/Google Presidential Debate, 9/22/11]

Term "Illegal" Dominates Word Cloud Of Public's Immigration Questions

Baier: Word Cloud "Shows The Words That Were Used Most Often In All Of The Questions You Asked About Immigration."  From the debate:

BRET BAIER (co-moderator): After the break, we will be tackling foreign policy, government spending. Shannon [Bream] will have more on that, too. And also the issue of immigration.

Now, here for a preview of what's to come, let's take a look at what's called a word cloud. It shows the words that were used most often in all of the questions you asked about immigration. The bigger the word, the more often it was used.

The biggest word in this cloud, as you see, is "illegal." [Fox News, Fox News-Google GOP Debate, 9/22/11]

Word Cloud Dominated By "Illegal." From the debate:

[Fox News, GOP Debate, 9/22/11]

Journalists Have Called On Media To Stop Using Pejorative Term "Illegals"

AP Stylebook Explicitly Instructs Journalists Not To Use "Illegal Or Illegals." In its entry for "illegal immigrant," the Associated Press Stylebook specifically instructs journalists not to shorten the phrase to exclude the word "immigrant." From their official entry of the term "illegal immigrant":

Used to describe someone who has entered the country illegally or who resides in the country illegally. It is the preferred term, not illegal alien or undocumented worker. Do not use the shortened term an illegal or illegals. [AP Stylebook, accessed 9/23/11]

National Association Of Hispanic Journalists Called For News Media To Stop Use Of "Illegals" As A Noun. In a March 2006 press release, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ), a "2,300-member organization of reporters, editors and other journalists," stated that it was "particularly troubled with the growing trend of the news media to use the word 'illegals' as a noun, shorthand for 'illegal aliens,' " adding: "Using the word in this way is grammatically incorrect and crosses the line by criminalizing the person, not the action they are purported to have committed":

NAHJ is concerned with the increasing use of pejorative terms to describe the estimated 11 million undocumented people living in the United States. NAHJ is particularly troubled with the growing trend of the news media to use the word "illegals" as a noun, shorthand for "illegal aliens". Using the word in this way is grammatically incorrect and crosses the line by criminalizing the person, not the action they are purported to have committed. NAHJ calls on the media to never use "illegals" in headlines.

Shortening the term in this way also stereotypes undocumented people who are in the United States as having committed a crime. Under current U.S. immigration law, being an undocumented immigrant is not a crime, it is a civil violation. Furthermore, an estimated 40 percent of all undocumented people living in the U.S. are visa overstayers, meaning they did not illegally cross the U.S. border. [National Association Of Hispanic Journalists, 3/06]

For more about the truth on the pejorative term "illegal," click here.

Fox's "Straight News" Shows Have Repeatedly Used Slur

Fox's Henneberg: "Democrats Want A Pathway To Citizenship For Illegals." From the April 19 edition of Special Report with Bret Baier:

MOLLY HENNEBERG (Fox News correspondent): During the first part of his term, the president was not able to get the Democratically controlled Congress to pass immigration legislation. Now, with the GOP in control of the House, he's testing Republican lawmakers, saying in an interview last night, quote, "Are we going to be able to find some Republicans who can partner with me and others to get this done once and for all instead of using it as a political football?"

The 2010 Census shows that Hispanics and Latinos are the largest minority group in the country. Democrats want a pathway to citizenship for illegals and also border security. But Republicans have long held that tightening the border should come first. [Fox News, Special Report with Bret Baier, 4/19/11]

Fox's Baier: "Law Penaliz[es] Businesses For Hiring Illegals." From the May 26 edition of Special Report:

BAIER: [T]he U.S. Supreme Court has upheld Arizona's law, penalizing businesses for hiring illegals. The vote was 5-3 with one abstention. The justices rejected arguments that the states have no role in immigration matters, which could open the door to other challenges. [Fox News, Special Report with Bret Baier, 5/26/11]

Fox's On-Screen Graphic: "Border Patrol Apprehended 445K+ Illegals Entering The U.S. In FY10." From the April 19 edition of America Live:

[Fox News, America Live, 4/19/11]

Fox's On-Screen Graphic Announces Court Ruling On "In-State Tuition For Illegals." From the June 7 edition of America's Newsroom:

[Fox News, America's Newsroom, 6/7/11]

Fox's Colby Uses "Illegals" Slur Twice. From Fox News' Happening Now:

JAMIE COLBY (anchor): A major shift in immigration policy. The Obama administration indefinitely delaying deportations of many illegals with clean criminal records, saying it'll let them focus their efforts on deporting the dangerous convicts and illegals who pose more of a security risk, but critics are arguing it amounts to backdoor amnesty. [Fox News, Happening Now, 8/19/11]

Fox's MacCallum Repeatedly Refers To "Illegals" While Discussing Health Care Reform. From the November 6, 2009, edition of America's Newsroom:

MARTHA MacCALLUM (anchor): Now, to Congress' plan to overhaul the nation's health care system. The House is going to vote on their health care legislation, we hear now, sometime probably late tomorrow. And there are a group of Hispanic lawmakers who are not at all happy about what's in this bill. They don't like the specific language in the Senate bill that would bar illegals -- illegals -- from participating in these federal insurance plans, even if they decide to use their own money to buy into the plan. President Obama spoke with one of them yesterday, and joining us now is the national chairwoman of the Republican National Hispanic Assembly, Alci Maldonado. Good to have you with us ma'am, welcome.

ALCI MALDONADO: Thank you, I'm excited and honored to be with you, thank you.

MacCALLUM: Talk to me a little bit about -- you know, the main issue here is that in the Senate bill and in the President Obama-approved version of all of this, illegals would not be able to buy into this plan, and I think a lot of people understand why that would be. But in the House bill, which is known as H.R. 3962, in the House bill, the thinking is that if you allowed them to buy in, then at least they're covered, and they're not going to emergency rooms and getting covered by taxpayers in many cases anyway. What do you think about that?

MALDONADO: Well, Martha, let me begin by saying that it's very confusing, all of it is very confusing for everybody, and of course illegals. And I hate to call them that. OK. [Fox News, America's Newsroom, 11/06/09]

Expand All Expand 1st Level Collapse All Add Comment
    • Author by 17andLiberal (September 23, 2011 8:42 pm ET)
      13 6
      I winced every time I heard them use that word, most of all when one of the moderators did it. I know some people think it's a silly political correctness thing, but something about referring to a group of people as "illegals" is just dehumanizing in my opinion. It reminds me of when another group of people were called "coloreds".
      Report Abuse
      • Author by Disputed Zone (September 23, 2011 9:23 pm ET)
        10 5
        The dehumanizing aspect of the word is what bothers me too, especially given the level of illegality. I understand the impulse to dehumanize murderers and rapists, or someone like Bernie Madoff, but in this case we are talking about people who may have comitted a misdemeanor by coming here and are only in violation of civil law by being here.
        Report Abuse
        • Author by danielsangeo (September 23, 2011 10:38 pm ET)
          10 4
          Yep. If you're going to use the word "illegal" to describe these people, then describe all that break the law as such. Go over the speed limit, you're an illegal. Park in a handicapped spot without a permit, you're an illegal. Park too long at a parking meter so that the time expires, you're an illegal. Take a candy bar from a store and not pay for it, you're an illegal. Download a copyrighted song from the Internet, you're an illegal. Go through a red light, you're an illegal. Rob a bank, you're an illegal. Bilk investors out of millions of dollars in a Ponzi scheme, you're an illegal.

          It makes me wonder how many illegals are actually in the United States.....
          Report Abuse
          • Author by foghornleghorn (September 24, 2011 10:06 am ET)
            4 4
            Or, in a more appropriate sense, if you have an outstanding warrant for an unpaid traffic offense, you're illegal.
            Report Abuse
            • Author by katanakumori (September 24, 2011 5:27 pm ET)
              4 9
              Breaking the speed limit IS ILLEGAL DRIVING! Parking in a handicapped parking spot IS ILLEGAL PARKING! Parking by an expired meter IS ILLEGAL PARKING! Shoplifting IS ILLEGAL! Downloading copyrighted material without permission or paying for it IS ILLEGAL! Running a red light IS ILLEGAL DRIVING! Robbing a bank IS ILLEGAL! Stealing money through fraud IS ILLEGAL!

              Illegal is a word, a word with a definition. The definition being (per Websters): not according to or authorized by the law, unlawful, illicit.

              Entering a country without permission and working without a work visa IS ILLEGAL!

              The newspeak journalists want to redefine words to suit their own ends and the liberal-socialists want to besmirch those who disagree with their beliefs. The same way as they use the sexual term "teabagger" to besmirch those who have disagree with big government taxes, big government programs, big government regulations, big government wasteful spending, big government debt etc.

              Who gave journalists the right to redefine words?

              You people are pathetic!
              Report Abuse
              • Author by katanakumori (September 24, 2011 5:46 pm ET)
                3 7
                To add to you ignorant morons education, this is from the US Legal Dictionary of Legal Definitions:

                An illegal immigrant is a person who has entered the country without official authorization. Federal immigration law provides means by which certain aliens can become naturalized citizens with full rights of citizenship. Immigration law determines who may enter, how long they may stay and when they must leave.

                The main legislation governing immigration is the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952, (INA). The act hads been amended numerous times, the most significant of which was the establishment of a new quota system in 1965. For INA purposes, an "alien" is any person who is not a citizen or a national of the United States. There are different categories of aliens: resident and nonresident, immigrant and nonimmigrant, documented and undocumented ("illegal").

                So I assume that "journalists" now have the authority to re-write the US Legal Code of definitions?

                Report Abuse
                • Author by Johaely (September 24, 2011 7:08 pm ET)
                  6 3
                  Your document confirmed it that the correct term is illegal immigrant, not "illegal".
                  Report Abuse
                • Author by Deluded (September 25, 2011 8:49 pm ET)
                  5 3
                  Are journalists trying to reclassify illegal immigrants as anything else? That's not what they are doing, what they are trying to do is to get the media to stop using the term "illegals" to refer to them. They never objected to the the term "illegal immigrants" at all, nor are they tring to re-write legal definitions.

                  Nice straw man.
                  Report Abuse
              • Author by VictorLaszlo (September 24, 2011 5:58 pm ET)
                5 4
                "Teabagger" doesn't meant all that stuff you said. It simply means 'idiot.'
                Report Abuse
                • Author by katanakumori (September 24, 2011 6:09 pm ET)
                  4 8
                  Illegal alien means someone in a country without legal authorization. It's called a "slur" because liberal-socialists say so.

                  And we all know that liberal-socialists are right about absolutely everything.
                  Report Abuse
                  • Author by Johaely (September 24, 2011 7:07 pm ET)
                    4 4
                    Its called a slur because its used in a negative tone and has xenophobic undertones. Illegal alien is an outdated term that, just like Negro, in the past was considered a neutral term. The legally correct terms are: illegal immigration, undocumented immigration (although it technically is something different), unauthorized immigration or irregular immigration (the last one only used by the UN).
                    Report Abuse
                  • Author by fo3angels (September 24, 2011 7:17 pm ET)
                    8 4
                    Sword of Clouds, the problem is not the use of the term illegal aliens. The problem is labeling a group of people 'illegals', as if THEY rather than what they did was illegal.
                    Report Abuse
                  • Author by Conchobhar (September 25, 2011 11:17 am ET)
                    3 3
                    And we all know that liberal-socialists are right about absolutely everything.
                    Not absolutely everything; just everything that matters. :>)
                    Report Abuse
                • Author by altsoba (September 26, 2011 11:35 am ET)
                  2 3
                  "Teabagger" doesn't meant all that stuff you said. It simply means 'idiot.'


                  So you are admitting that you yourself are an idiot.

                  But we already knew that, it's obvious.
                  Report Abuse
                  • Author by Johaely (September 26, 2011 12:44 pm ET)
                    1 2
                    When you are trying to do the "i know what you are but what am i?" routine, it really helps to actually read what was wrote.
                    Report Abuse
              • Author by The_Cat (September 24, 2011 8:07 pm ET)
                5 5
                Breaking the speed limit IS ILLEGAL DRIVING! Parking in a handicapped parking spot IS ILLEGAL PARKING! Parking by an expired meter IS ILLEGAL PARKING! Shoplifting IS ILLEGAL! Downloading copyrighted material without permission or paying for it IS ILLEGAL! Running a red light IS ILLEGAL DRIVING! Robbing a bank IS ILLEGAL! Stealing money through fraud IS ILLEGAL!

                Illegal is a word, a word with a definition. The definition being (per Websters): not according to or authorized by the law, unlawful, illicit.

                Entering a country without permission and working without a work visa IS ILLEGAL!

                I get it, katankumori, and I will be referring to you as an illegal from now own. After all, everyone in America, EVERYONE, has broken the law in one way or another. Just because you don't know which law you've broken, just because you haven't been charged, doesn't make you any less illegal.

                The newspeak journalists want to redefine words to suit their own ends and the liberal-socialists want to besmirch those who disagree with their beliefs. The same way as they use the sexual term "teabagger" to besmirch those who have disagree with big government taxes, big government programs, big government regulations, big government wasteful spending, big government debt etc.

                The teabaggers were the first to call themselves teabaggers. Then somebody told them there was a second, more urban or slang meaning to that word, which made it quite funny in the eyes of most Americans. It still is funny. The teabaggers are an astroturf group started with Kock brothers' money and the help of some Faux Con/Republican front groups. The teabaggers are a teeny tiny racist minority in America, and always will be.

                Who gave journalists the right to redefine words?

                I'm guessing here that you are rightly offended that Chris Wallace used the inappropriate and highly pejorative term 'illegals' rather than 'illegal immigrants' or 'undocumented workers'. You're quite correct that it is wrong for people who call themselves journalists to behave in this way, but then Fox Propaganda isn't really about journalism, is it? And it never really has been.

                You people are pathetic!

                Ha! Like your opinion matters at all.
                Report Abuse
              • Author by 17andLiberal (September 24, 2011 8:23 pm ET)
                9 4
                Who gave journalists the right to redefine words?
                That's exactly what I'm asking. My problem is not with the word illegal, but with how the right wing chooses to use it.

                Illegal is an adjective, and I have no problem with it being used as such ie. illegal immigrant, illegal campaign contributions, illegal activity.

                But it is not a noun (go ahead, check), and so referring to a person as an "illegal" is not only offensive and ignorant, but also gramatically incorrect.

                So, I'll repeat you and ask who gave journalists the right to redefine words?
                Report Abuse
              • Author by Deluded (September 25, 2011 8:47 pm ET)
                4 4
                All those words you listed above list ACTIONS as illegal, whereas the term "illegals" defines PEOPLE as illegal.

                Just what sort of people are ILLEGAL (not according to or authorized by the law, unlawful, illicit, as per websters definition) without the need for any sort of descriptive action anyway?

                Long post, but completely no addressing of the actual point.
                Report Abuse
                • Author by jonimacaroni1 (September 26, 2011 1:22 am ET)
                  2 6
                  That's because he's a troll. He was never trying to address the actual point. He was trying to draw people into his web and get them all tangled up!
                  Report Abuse
              • Author by NotSure8 (September 26, 2011 3:43 pm ET)
                   
                Who uses "teabagger" that is in the "mainstream" media? "Tea Party" is a complete misnomer too until someone, anyone, gets elected with a (T) by their name instead of an (R).
                Report Abuse
            • Author by LibsAreAVirus (September 26, 2011 1:18 am ET)
                 
              Or maybe Americans should just stop caring what these people are called. When a man enters my home without my permission, I don't give much thought to what "term" I should be using to refer to that person. Maybe Americans should start respecting the importance of their nation's sovereignty rather than spending their time crying for people who obviously have no respect for it. Can someone remind me why we call liberals "bleeding hearts"? Boo-Hoo
              Report Abuse
          • Author by LibsAreAVirus (September 26, 2011 1:05 am ET)
               
            This is a great point. I have to admit that I have never thought of this subject in this manner. I totally agree with you. Why should we refer to a single group of blatant criminals as illegals when so many other people in this country commit so many unrelated crimes? If people that rob banks are bank robbers and people that speed are speeders then maybe citizens of other countries that criminally trespass on American soil should be called criminal trespassers. What a genius. What was Fox News Channel thinking? Why would it ever be appropriate to refer to someone immigrating to this country illegally as an illegal immigrant? Somebody really should put a stop to all this irresponsible reporting.
            Report Abuse
        • Author by joelwisch2 (September 24, 2011 9:52 am ET)
             
          The reason it is a civil matter is because it is very, very expensive to remove them if you include all that a felony includes. The seriousness of the cost of the 'removal' is high. It is NOT a friendly gesture to drop over and be deported.. it is a lot of thousands of dollars. We have people NOT going to school in this country because the illegal aliens are whiny about their country and unwilling to do anything about it. $113 Billion in welfare to the illegal aliens? That one is very wrong.

          Stop it.. now!
          Report Abuse
    • Author by chuckPRIVATE (September 23, 2011 11:25 pm ET)
         
      Good for Fox. Since the "undocumented" "immigrants" are in fact here illegally, "Illegals" is a correct and appropriate term for them, and I advocate that everyone continues to use it. Regardless of whether you purveyors of Newspeak approve, facts will be recognized, and they will be named.
      Report Abuse
    • Author by ASD (September 23, 2011 11:28 pm ET)
         
      You libs needs to find a better word if you don't want people calling illegal immigrants "illegals."

      People who follow the laws in coming here are legal immigrants. People who break the laws in coming here are illegal immigrants.
      It's technically correct. Find a better term before you whine about political correctness.
      Report Abuse
    • Author by allthewayleft (September 24, 2011 12:24 am ET)
         
      Illegals are breaking the law. I have seen them break the law knowing full well that their documentation issue saves them from real punishment. I know many illegals, think most of them are good people, but want all to be documented. I have helped prove an illegal committed credit card fraud (not on myself), and he just goes back to his country, from which he'll return shortly. I would have gone to jail, yet he is basically let go. Live where there are illegals around. Wonder if that illegal is going to steal or defraud you, or do it by taking a job that could be yours.
      Report Abuse
    • Author by uncle_samurai420 (September 24, 2011 2:13 am ET)
         
      Entering America illegal is a federal crime, not a civil violation...

      a) Improper time or place; avoidance of examination or inspection;
      misrepresentation and concealment of facts
      Any alien who (1) enters or attempts to enter the United States
      at any time or place other than as designated by immigration
      officers, or (2) eludes examination or inspection by immigration
      officers, or (3) attempts to enter or obtains entry to the United
      States by a willfully false or misleading representation or the
      willful concealment of a material fact, shall, for the first
      commission of any such offense, be fined under title 18 or
      imprisoned not more than 6 months, or both, and, for a subsequent
      commission of any such offense, be fined under title 18, or
      imprisoned not more than 2 years, or both.
      (b) Improper time or place; civil penalties
      Any alien who is apprehended while entering (or attempting to
      enter) the United States at a time or place other than as
      designated by immigration officers shall be subject to a civil
      penalty of -
      (1) at least $50 and not more than $250 for each such entry (or
      attempted entry); or
      (2) twice the amount specified in paragraph (1) in the case of
      an alien who has been previously subject to a civil penalty under
      this subsection.
      Civil penalties under this subsection are in addition to, and not
      in lieu of, any criminal or other civil penalties that may be
      imposed.
      (c) Marriage fraud
      Any individual who knowingly enters into a marriage for the
      purpose of evading any provision of the immigration laws shall be
      imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or fined not more than
      $250,000, or both.
      (d) Immigration-related entrepreneurship fraud
      Any individual who knowingly establishes a commercial enterprise
      for the purpose of evading any provision of the immigration laws
      shall be imprisoned for not more than 5 years, fined in accordance
      with title 18, or both.
      Report Abuse
    • Author by ampat (September 24, 2011 4:32 am ET)
         
      This is hilarious. Calling people who come here illegally "illegal" is now a slur? "Journalists," apparently the arbiters of what we are allowed to say and not say, have called on us to stop referring to lawbreakers as lawbreakers?

      Let's stop calling thieves thieves and murders murderers lest we hurt their feelings.
      Report Abuse
    • Author by joelwisch2 (September 24, 2011 9:48 am ET)
         
      The term for illegal aliens, in English, is illegal aliens. You can winch all day long.. they are called illegal aliens, and they are very, very, very expensive.
      Further, if they come from Mexico, they are coming from a country with a 5.4% unemployment rate, and the number 13 world economy. All of this, and none of the Mexican goods are defense related and there-in, lost to the economy.

      You cannot get a job up here. You can get a job down there. People are calling the immigrants and no one knows what they are talking about. Illegal aliens is the correct term and are into our purse to the tune of about $113 billion dollars. Trust me.. it is a kindness at this point.
      Report Abuse
    • Author by altsoba (September 24, 2011 1:23 pm ET)
      6 11
      You have people that disregard our laws and cross our border illegally while others respect our laws and apply for legal US citizenship.

      The people who come here illegally are ILLEGALS they are not undocumented workers that term is ignorant and is the term that the political correctness groups that support open borders want the media to use because it sounds better for their cause.

      Our government is infringing more and more on our freedoms in the name of keeping us safe from terrorist and they grope us at the airports of force us through a body scanner that produces radiation and is not safe and now they are going to start groping us at sports stadiums and soon they will be doing the searches before you can enter the local shopping mall. Bush passed the Patriot Act which is not Patriotic and Obama has extended this unconstitutional law that allows the government to spy on us and illegally search our cars and homes among other very bad things but when it comes to doing something that dose not infringe on our freedoms and is not unconstitutional and secure our borders they ignore this and give terrorist a very good opportunity to enter our country and this is because of political correctness and politicians want the Hispanic votes.

      So you can call them undocumented workers but I will call them what they are ILLEGALS.
      Report Abuse
      • Author by danielsangeo (September 24, 2011 1:41 pm ET)
        6 3
        No, they are not "illegals" because no person can be "illegal". A person can commit illegal acts, but that doesn't make them "an illegal".

        You can use incorrect terminology if you want, but I will call them undocumented immigrants if they're here without working or undocumented workers if they are working.

        Because I like to use the correct words when speaking English.
        Report Abuse
        • Author by Chalucky (September 24, 2011 5:16 pm ET)
             
          You are correct...."illegal" should be associated with the
          relevant associated crime or violation. In this case the term "illegal alien" should not be broken up into a shortened version and represents laziness on the questioner's part.

          So, it follows I admit to being an "illegal parker" and once before, "an illegal speeder" when I violated the traffic laws. Feel free to label me as such...I am not, however, an illegal alien.

          Love the "undocumented" concept....really I am a undocumented porn star...I really am...I lack the films and portfolio to back up this claim, but using the word "undocumented" means you can claim whatever you want without underlying rationale...I love it !
          Report Abuse
        • Author by altsoba (September 25, 2011 1:46 am ET)
          3 5
          A person can commit illegal acts


          Yes they come here illegally so they are illegals.

          The term undocumented worker is incorrect terminology because when they cross our borders illegally they are not workers they are illegal criminals and they have no job here so they are not a worker.
          Report Abuse
          • Author by Johaely (September 25, 2011 9:21 am ET)
            3 3
            Illegal entry is not a crime. Its a civil offense. Now you are the one using incorrect terminology. BTW, most illegal immigrants come in order to get a job (or are offered it in their home countyr and cheated).
            Report Abuse
            • Author by altsoba (September 25, 2011 10:21 am ET)
              3 5
              Illegal entry is not a crime. Its a civil offense.


              It is a crime you are just to stupid to admit it.
              Report Abuse
              • Author by Conchobhar (September 25, 2011 10:50 am ET)
                3 3
                It is a crime you are just to stupid to admit it.


                Find and post reference to it in the criminal code. Felony, misdemeanor, what?

                Careful about calling people stupid, especially when you put a mistake next to the word and especially a few posts below the one in which 16andliberal took you to school.
                Report Abuse
          • Author by oblivia (September 25, 2011 10:13 am ET)
               
            False. Around half of America's illegal immigrants entered the country legally and simply overstayed their visa.
            Report Abuse
          • Author by jonimacaroni1 (September 25, 2011 11:39 am ET)
            2 5
            You're using the word in an inappropriate way. You know it, and sane people know it. That makes you a troll, and makes anyone who replies to you as though you're simply misinformed a fool.

            Stop treating this troll like he wants to honestly discuss this issue. Treat him the way he deserves to be treated.
            Report Abuse
      • Author by danielsangeo (September 24, 2011 1:42 pm ET)
        2 3
        (But, hey, good on you for protesting the term "undocumented". Are you offended by this term?)
        Report Abuse
      • Author by abusedcitizen (September 24, 2011 3:22 pm ET)
           
        I prefer the term "illegal alien". That eliminates all confusion over status. "Undocumented workers" only applies to illegal aliens that are employed. "Illegal alien" also avoids the claim that "no person can be illegal" as any immigration law breaker voluntarily qualifies for the title of "illegal alien". If an illegal alien decides he/she no longer wishes to qualify for the "illegal alien" title, it is immediately removed upon returning home.
        Report Abuse
      • Author by mikehuck76 (September 24, 2011 4:03 pm ET)
        5 2
        Thanks for providing the example of teabagger lunacy, altsoba. We appreciate it. Never mind that you seem to be in an argument with yourself from one paragraph to another. You clearly are incapable of having a substantive conversation about anything. But, I do have one funny question - What exactly do you find ignorant about the term "undocumented"? Do you just not know what the word ignorant means? That is truly ironic.
        Report Abuse
        • Author by Johaely (September 24, 2011 4:09 pm ET)
          3 3
          No, no, no. His is not not teabag lunacy. His is Black helicopter libertarian lunacy. There is actually a difference. While teabag lunacy is "i me mine" kind of lunacy, libertarian lunacy is "the government is going to implant me with a micro-chip" type.
          Report Abuse
        • Author by altsoba (September 25, 2011 2:04 am ET)
          3 5
          Ignorant means that you lack the knowledge or awareness and when they cross our border illegally they have no job therefore they are not workers. But you can call them whatever you want because the main problem is they need to go home.

          Besides we can no longer afford them here and I think we need to treat them the same as the Mexican government treats illegal immigrants.

          http://p.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/may/03/mexicos-illegals-laws-tougher-than-arizonas/?page=all


          http://www.newsmax.com/JamesWalsh/Illegal-Aliens-IRS-Tax/2011/09/23/id/412134
          Report Abuse
          • Author by Johaely (September 25, 2011 9:23 am ET)
            1 3
            Couldn't you get official sources for your claims? Washington Times and Newsmax are not reliable sources.
            Report Abuse
            • Author by altsoba (September 25, 2011 10:26 am ET)
              3 3
              They are just as reliable as Media Matters that you seem to believe every thing they say.

              Do your own research then because the links I provided are reliable.

              That is what you liberals always say anyway. If it isn't one of the far left web sites then you claim it isn't credible.
              Report Abuse
              • Author by Conchobhar (September 25, 2011 11:25 am ET)
                3 3
                If you find the Washington Times credible, you are definitely Moonstruck.
                Report Abuse
              • Author by Johaely (September 25, 2011 11:31 am ET)
                2 4
                Washington Times is slightly as reliable as the New York Post or the National Enquirer. The editorialize their news articles frequently (hell just read the title "Mexico's illegals laws tougher than Arizona's", which is not even proper grammar". That is not a reliable source.

                Report Abuse
                • Author by NotSure8 (September 26, 2011 4:03 pm ET)
                     
                  It's not even a valid comparison, because Arizona is not a country. I bet I could pick any random state and show how most if not all countries have stricter immigration laws.
                  Report Abuse
      • Author by fo3angels (September 24, 2011 7:22 pm ET)
        3 5
        Well, they are in fact undocumented workers, for the most part, and they are illegal aliens, and they are unauthorized immigrants, and a whole host of other things. But they are not in and of themselves illegals, undocumenteds, or unauthorizeds. By the way, keep in mind that the vast majority are here to WORK.

        As for the whole idea that people here illegally will vote, gimme a break!
        Report Abuse
    • Author by mikehuck76 (September 24, 2011 2:34 pm ET)
      6 5
      Well, if these debates have shown us anything, they have shown us that Obama may not have much to worry about after all. The new teabagger party has now applauded the execution of hundred of its own citizens, cheered for the idea that we let the uninsured sick die rather than help them, and booed a soldier that risks his life for them. This is your party, teabaggers. Enjoy the wilderness!
      Report Abuse
      • Author by altsoba (September 25, 2011 10:58 am ET)
        3 5
        You are an idiot. No one has ever said the uninsured sick should die.

        I guess you have never read Obama's science czar John Holdren's book he co-authored called Ecoscience that calls for forced abortions and mass sterilization. But of course you haven't because you worship Obama and every thing he supports. You are a pathetic human being because you twist people's words against them and then completely ignore hard facts that someone chosen by Obama to be part of his administration has a much worse proven beliefs that we should force women to have abortions and put drugs in our drinking water to sterilize us. Here are some other highlights from his book that are very disturbing but give a glimpse to the mindset of Obama and his administration.

        • Women could be forced to abort their pregnancies, whether they wanted to or not
        • The population at large could be sterilized by infertility drugs intentionally put into the nation's drinking water or in food.
        • Single mothers and teen mothers should have their babies seized from them against their will and given away to other couples to raise.
        • People who "contribute to social deterioration" (i.e. undesirables) "can be required by law to exercise reproductive responsibility" in other words, be compelled to have abortions or be sterilized.
        • A transnational "Planetary Regime" should assume control of the global economy and also dictate the most intimate details of Americans lives using an armed international police force.


        These are the type of sick phucks we have in the white house that Obama seems to share the same sick thinking of or else he would not have them in his administration.

        So rather than twist the words of presidential candidates just because they are Republican maybe you should actually read up on the scum bags that you helped get in the white house so you will realize how sick minded they really are.
        Report Abuse
        • Author by Conchobhar (September 25, 2011 11:28 am ET)
          2 3
          Poor pasting job there, noodles. Where'd you get it? Here's a hint: when suggesting the horrors that are in a book, don't make it so obvious that you, yourself, haven't read it.
          Report Abuse
          • Author by Johaely (September 25, 2011 11:43 am ET)
            1 3
            How odd. A quick google search shows in every website the same cluster of quotes and nothing beyond that. Hell, even the amazon reviews all echo the same things (from a 1000+ page book).
            Report Abuse
            • Author by Conchobhar (September 25, 2011 11:51 am ET)
              1 3
              Sounds like an organized campaign--of black helicopter paranoia.
              Report Abuse
            • Author by altsoba (September 25, 2011 12:44 pm ET)
              3 3
              That just verifies that this is what is in this book.

              And the fact that Obama would choose such an extreme moron to be part of his administration say a lot about Obama himself.

              Do you really think that someone with such extreme beliefs should be allowed to serve in any administration? I sure don't.
              Report Abuse
              • Author by Johaely (September 25, 2011 12:50 pm ET)
                1 3
                Did you even read the damn book? Those are 5 lines from a 1000 page book. Lines that are copy pasted throughout the whole internet. Lines without nay context to them. Lines which paranoid-schizos like you eat up and then go hide in your black helicopter bunkers.
                Report Abuse
                • Author by katanakumori (September 25, 2011 5:31 pm ET)
                  4 3
                  Those 5 lines speak volumes about the demented weirdo who wrote them. The tactics put forth reek of communism, totalitarianism and a police state.

                  Typical liberal-socialists who know better than everyone else how things should be done & want to FORCE those beliefs on everyone for the good of the state.

                  Obama probably met this psycho through his murdering, terrorist bomber friend Bill Ayers.
                  Report Abuse
                  • Author by Johaely (September 25, 2011 5:59 pm ET)
                    4 3
                    Do you use mad libs to write your posts?
                    Report Abuse
                  • Author by highlyunlikely (September 25, 2011 6:12 pm ET)
                    3 3
                    in which kat, after studiously avoiding it, revisits the word "socialist" without having bothered to learn what it entails.
                    Report Abuse
          • Author by altsoba (September 25, 2011 12:40 pm ET)
            3 5
            Like none of you stupid phucks never copy past to save typing.

            And yes I have read most but not all of the book.

            Have you ever read any of it? My guess Is NO

            Do you agree with this idiots beliefs?
            Report Abuse
            • Author by Disputed Zone (September 25, 2011 1:07 pm ET)
              3 3
              No, and neither does John Holdren. PolitiFact rated what you've copied and pasted about his book as "Pants on Fire", saying that it

              ... seriously mischaracterizes Holdren's positions. Holdren didn't advocate those ideas then. And, when asked at a Senate confirmation hearing, Holdren said he did not support them now. We think it's irresponsible to pluck a few lines from a 1,000-page, 30-year-old textbook, and then present them out of context to dismiss Holdren's long and distinguished career.
              Report Abuse
              • Author by katanakumori (September 25, 2011 5:33 pm ET)
                3 4
                So did he write them or not? Was he psycho at the time & get better, or did he change his tune when these sick thoughts were publicized?
                Report Abuse
                • Author by Disputed Zone (September 25, 2011 5:40 pm ET)
                  4 3
                  He never advocated those positions. The sickos are the ones pretending he did.
                  Report Abuse
                  • Author by altsoba (September 25, 2011 6:40 pm ET)
                    3 4
                    If he never advocated those positions then why did he co-author a book that did. That makes no logical sense at all.
                    Report Abuse
                    • Author by Johaely (September 25, 2011 6:54 pm ET)
                      4 3
                      You said you were in the process of reading the book, yet base your complete opinion on five context-less lines. You have also made the illogical leap from "discussing" to "advocating". The book (written almost 40 years ago) discusses such positions and their possibility/legality/usefulness.
                      Report Abuse
                    • Author by Deluded (September 25, 2011 8:59 pm ET)
                      4 3
                      If a guy conducts a thought experiment (ie. a discussion) on using nuclear armament to wipe out dissenters, but never advocates it beyond simply putting the idea forward and discussing it academically, can we say that guy is a monster?

                      You need to prove that he advocates it first, and simply stating it does not mean he advocates it. In a competitive debate, the people who argue one point or another do not necessarily advocate them peronally.
                      Report Abuse
                    • Author by 17andLiberal (September 26, 2011 12:53 am ET)
                      4 3
                      In which altsoba is proven as a liar and his/her assertions are debunked beyond redemption.

                      But come on, I saw that coming after this:
                      No one has ever said the uninsured sick should die.
                      FYI: If I ask if society should leave the uninsured sick to die, and someone yells "YEAH!", they are, in fact, saying that the uninsured sick should die.
                      Report Abuse
                      • Author by altsoba (September 26, 2011 12:02 pm ET)
                        1 6
                        Your an idiot.

                        Even if some moron in the crowd yelled that it dose not mean the candidates or anyone else agree it just means you have a lone idiot like you in the crowd.
                        Report Abuse
                        • Author by jonimacaroni1 (September 26, 2011 12:10 pm ET)
                          4 1
                          "Your an idiot."

                          Says the troll who doesn't even know how to spell *you're* - the contraction for 'you are.'
                          Report Abuse
                        • Author by Old_Benjamin (September 26, 2011 3:41 pm ET)
                          5 1
                          Even if some moron in the crowd yelled that it dose not mean the candidates or anyone else agree it just means you have a lone idiot like you in the crowd.


                          Really? So you lied when you posted this?

                          No one has ever said the uninsured sick should die.


                          Seems you have admitted in fact there is at least one person that said the uninsured sick should die. Why do you have to lie?

                          No true scotsman indeed.
                          Report Abuse
                        • Author by 17andLiberal (September 26, 2011 7:12 pm ET)
                          2 1
                          You will find that "some moron in the crowd" (several, actually) is in fact not "no one". So when you claimed "No one has ever said the uninsured sick should die"(emphasis added), you were wrong. You would look a lot less ignorant if you conceded that now.

                          You've been trumped by a teenager in this thread how many times? Three? And I thought wisdom was supposed to come with age...
                          Report Abuse
                    • Author by cripto9t709 (September 26, 2011 9:09 am ET)
                      3  
                      "That makes no logical sense at all. "

                      You wouldn't know logic if it was kicking your @ss.

                      You know what doesn't make sense to me?

                      Judging someone based on nothing more than 5 or 6 lines that somebody told me came from a 1000+ page book, lines that aren't even in the book, that doesn't make sense to me.
                      Report Abuse
                • Author by jonimacaroni1 (September 25, 2011 7:05 pm ET)
                  3 4
                  If you were truly interested in the answers to your questions, you would have clicked on the Politifact link.

                  They aren't his "sick thoughts." Never were before, and aren't now either.

                  In response to the comments from Beck and others, Holdren's office issued this statement: "The quotations used to suggest that Dr. Holdren supports coercive approaches to limiting population growth were taken from a 1977 college textbook on environmental science and policy, of which he was the third author. The quoted material was from a section of the book that described different possible approaches to limiting population growth and then concluded that the authors’ own preference was to employ the noncoercive approaches before the environmental and social impacts of overpopulation led desperate societies to employ coercive ones. Dr. Holdren has never been an advocate of compulsory abortions or other repressive means of population limitation."

                  Holdren's office also provided a statement from Annie and Paul Ehrlich, the co-authors: "We have been shocked at the serious mischaracterization of our views and those of John Holdren in blog posts based on misreadings of our jointly-authored 1000-page 1977 textbook, ECOSCIENCE. We were not then, never have been, and are not now 'advocates' of the Draconian measures for population limitation described — but not recommended — in the book's 60-plus small-type pages cataloging the full spectrum of population policies that, at the time, had either been tried in some country or analyzed by some commentator.
                  Report Abuse
            • Author by Conchobhar (September 25, 2011 3:55 pm ET)
              4 3
              I'm beginning to enjoy you, noodles. Every time you call someone "stupid," you manage to mangle the grammar of your sentence. Rock on.
              Report Abuse
            • Author by jonimacaroni1 (September 25, 2011 7:02 pm ET)
              4 3
              1. When honest people copy and paste something, they credit the original source.

              2. When honest people copy and paste something, they try to find out if the stuff they're providing to others is an in-context, honest piece of work. What you copied and pasted isn't.
              Report Abuse
        • Author by Deluded (September 25, 2011 8:57 pm ET)
          5 3
          Ah this point again.

          MMFA has addressed this in the past already but it seems that people are still dredging this up.

          What was described in that book can be considered akin to a thought experiment, in other words the listing of possible ideas and opinions that may well violate ethical or principal boundaries.

          Discussing the reduction of human population through forced abortions and other inhumane methods is not a crime. In keeping within the discussion at an academic or scientific level it can be considered a discussion as any other, just one with no boundaries set.

          In order to accuse Holdren of being a monster you have to be able to prove that those were his opinions and intentions (Holdren has denied this already). Within the book, there is nothing to state that he was actually ADVOCATING these ideas (indeed there was a line within the book itself that stated that such actions would be too implausible or too far over the line of ethics to be even considered).

          You read the book the way you wanted to read it and your post is the result.
          Report Abuse
          • Author by altsoba (September 26, 2011 1:34 am ET)
            3 7
            What was described in that book can be considered akin to a thought experiment, in other words the listing of possible ideas and opinions that may well violate ethical or principal boundaries.


            You call it a thought experiment and I call it a phucked up way of thinking.

            Holdren is a moron and anyone that believes the crap you write about him not advocating this line of thinking after him and his pals actually put it down in writing in a published book is as big a moron as him.

            You claim it was just a discussion about population reduction but it becomes more than a discussion when it is published in a book and that just proves you are just as phucked up in the head as him.

            I think we should abort Holdren and any like minded friends of his. That would be a good start to reducing the population.
            Report Abuse
            • Author by 17andLiberal (September 26, 2011 4:44 am ET)
              4 3
              It was not just a "book", it was a textbook. Your ignorance to that fact shows that you most certainly have not read through "most of it", let alone opened it, or likely even heard of it prior to reading your little copy/paste conspiracy theory.

              And you're saying that if someone writes about something, it means that they advocate it, regardless of context? So everyone who has ever written aa history book that mentions slavery or the Holocaust are advocating those things?

              I know you might not be too familiar with textbooks, but surely you know better. A textbook that says "Some people have proposed these methods for population control" is as supportive of those methods as textbooks that say "Ptolemiac theory proposes that the earth is the center of the universe" or "Political dissidents could be executed by authoritarian leaders" are of those ideas.

              Also, you can't "abort" a living adult. That would be murder. And since you have written about murdering Holdren and his friends, by your logic, you are supportive of it. You're supportive of it by any logic actually, since you literally said "I think we should"....
              Report Abuse
            • Author by Old_Benjamin (September 26, 2011 3:45 pm ET)
              2 1
              You claim it was just a discussion about population reduction but it becomes more than a discussion when it is published in a book and that just proves you are just as phucked up in the head as him.


              So you don't understand what books are either? That's really quite sad.
              Report Abuse
        • Author by cripto9t709 (September 26, 2011 8:13 am ET)
          4  
          "I guess you have never read Obama's science czar John Holdren's book he co-authored called Ecoscience that calls for forced abortions and mass sterilization."

          I don't believe you've read it either. What's the first complete sentence on page 300?
          Report Abuse
    • Author by The_Cat (September 24, 2011 8:24 pm ET)
      4 4
      It just occurred to me what may happen with the whole question of illegal immigrants. Bear in mind right now that it is a simple civil offense, the equivalent of a speeding or parking ticket.

      If we get enough Faux Cons/Republicans in Congress, however, they may get together and decide to declare the 'War on Illegals' (and here I'm just using the mistaken terminology that they are so comfortable with). I reckon it should work out about as well as the Republican War on Drugs, or War on Poverty, or War on Homelessness, but probably a lot better than the whole War in Iraq thing.
      Report Abuse
    • Author by butchmcsnutch@gmail.com (September 24, 2011 10:36 pm ET)
         
      The most accurate legal term is illegal alien. Most people think it's pejorative to try and sanitize it with "undocumented immigrant." If they don't want to be called what they are then they shouldn't CHOOSE to be illegal aliens.
      Report Abuse
    • Author by Pollofrito (September 25, 2011 10:53 am ET)
         
      Mayhaps we should call them Criminal border-crossers. But that incorporates the word cross which is associated with Christianity and we can't talk about Jesus anymore.

      I remember we once called them illegal aliens, but the residents of Area 51's VIP penthouse suite took offense, and we had to choose a different nomenclature.

      The conservative journalists associate the word immigrant with the millions of hopeful tired, poor, and huddled masses who came to Ellis Island and sought citizenship the proper way.

      So, I guess illegals really is the best word to describe them. It's not a slur...it's a freakin' adjective.
      Report Abuse
    • Author by Conchobhar (September 25, 2011 12:05 pm ET)
      1 2
      Off topic, but someone in the '60's wrote that the only people who could get away with wearing Greek fisherman's caps and war bonnets are Greek fishermen and Indians. Same with cowboy hats. I despise people who wear them for effect.
      Report Abuse
      • Author by katanakumori (September 25, 2011 5:35 pm ET)
        2 4
        You despise people who wear hats?

        Sounds like you have some "issues".
        Report Abuse
        • Author by katanakumori (September 25, 2011 5:36 pm ET)
          3 3
          PS.

          What do you think of Barry's hat in this picture?

          http://apramamedia.com/2011/08/conservative-pundit-david-limbaugh-tweets-racist-obama-perry-pic/
          Report Abuse
          • Author by highlyunlikely (September 25, 2011 6:16 pm ET)
            2 3
            since kat still hasn't gotten the compulsion to argue for argument's sake out of his system, he resorts to the most irrelevant question he can come up with.
            Report Abuse
        • Author by Johaely (September 25, 2011 6:01 pm ET)
          2 3
          I despise people who wear them for effect.


          Learn 2 Read.

          Sounds like you have some "issues".


          This is from the person who seems to be incapable of going on daily without writing some knee jerk Obama post.
          Report Abuse
          • Author by Conchobhar (September 25, 2011 8:06 pm ET)
            2 2
            He's right about one thing, though. I do have a couple of back issues of The Economist hanging around. I particularly like the one where they rescind their former approval of George W. Bush, and castigate his tax cuts as inevitably "copper fastening a rigid class system in the United States." They've been proved prescient.
            Report Abuse
        • Author by highlyunlikely (September 25, 2011 6:15 pm ET)
          3 3
          kat gets it wrong on purpose. He actually did understand the qualifier "for effect" but he needed something to argue so he pretended it wasn't part of the sentence.
          Report Abuse
          • Author by Conchobhar (September 25, 2011 8:21 pm ET)
            1 4
            Kat can't help it. Context, to a right winger, is something to be twisted or ignored.
            Report Abuse
        • Author by Deluded (September 25, 2011 9:00 pm ET)
            2
          I despise people who wear them for effect


          No that's not what he said.
          Report Abuse
          • Author by Conchobhar (September 25, 2011 10:30 pm ET)
            2 2
            No, it's not, but I'm beginning to regret saying anything at all. It was distracting and self-indulgent. Who cares about that particular peeve of mine? Even I don't care a whole thread's worth.
            Report Abuse

Push Back

Phone calls, emails and letters from the public do make a difference. Remember that to be effective you must be polite, and professional. Express your specific concerns regarding that particular news report or commentary, and indicate what you would like the media outlet to do differently in the future.