'Minuteman' Newsbeat Shuns The Word "Illegal"
By Daneen G. Peterson, Ph.D.
April 11, 2005
In their reporting on the Minuteman Project, the following nationwide newspaper headlines exhibit a remarkable commonality. What do they all have in common? Not ONE of the headlines, had the 'guts' to print the words 'illegal aliens' or use the adjective 'illegal' in conjunction with their nouns! It is a national disgrace that 99% of the media have deliberately obscured the illegal alien issue by applying the tactic of omission. Why does the media routinely and systematically apply euphemistic nouns such as 'immigrant' or 'migrant,' or 'border crossers,' and then deliberately omit their status of illegality? For what purpose or rationale does the media subvert by omission, their coverage of the invasion of our country by a 'human tsunami' of illegal aliens? Just how clever and underhanded are the media in their subterfuge . . . let me count the ways:
What exactly is being implied by using terms like: "migrants" or "border hoppers" or "border crossers" or a "migrant watch" or "immigration opponents?" It seems a whole lot like saying:
What all those euphemistic terms are missing, is the pertinent, descriptive adjective "illegal" as in "illegal immigration opponents" or "illegal migrants" or "illegal border hoppers/crossers!" The wide-spread pervasive use of such euphemisms are deliberate! They are subversive because they cover up a personís illegal status. The solution, why not use the official term of "illegal alien" as set forth in the United States Code of immigration law!
Some other euphemisms, such as: undocumented migrants; immigrant workers; undocumented immigrants; economic migrant; undocumented individual; undocumented residents," etc., ad nauseum are routinely substituted for 'illegal immigrants' or 'illegal migrants!' Most frequently the term 'undocumented' is used in an obvious attempt to imply an immigrant or migrant is just some poor hard working person that is only lacking some sort of paperwork (undocumented). When in fact, the "undocumented" are illegal aliens breaking our immigration laws, invading our country, and flaunting our sovereignty with impunity. When you add the qualifying adjective "illegal" to those euphemistic nouns, then they become factual and accurate. Isn't that what media reporting is supposed to be about, facts and accuracy?
Notice anything else? Not ONE headline calls the Minutemen "patriots!" These are volunteers who gave up their vacations and left the comfort of 'hearth and home' to participate in a protest in the desert beneath an unrelenting sun, exposed to wind blown sand, oppressive heat and camping out . . . sans swimming pool. They may live thousands of miles away and yet they feel compelled to come. They leave behind their personal obligations to jobs and family. It takes money, perhaps needed for other things, to travel! These are true American patriots who are fighting to seal our southern border to millions upon millions of illegal aliens, some of which are gang members, drug runners, murderers and possible terrorists! For their efforts, they are called "immigration opponents," (minus the adjective "illegal"), "monitors," "border watchers," "activists," the "Tombstone gang," and "armed volunteers!"
As it stands today, the American public is being shamelessly 'brainwashed' by the media and others, concerning the 18-20 millions illegal aliens that have invaded our country and continue to do so at a rate of 10,000 per day! By deliberately employing unspecified vagueness, and euphemistic substitutions such as, "immigrant (unspecified)," or "migrant (unspecified)" or "undocumented worker" they continually insult and offend their knowledgeable audience!
Why do you suppose there is such wide-spread use of these euphemisms? It appears to be a concerted effort by many to "put lipstick on a pig" as Tom Tancredo has famously iterated. It is simple way to cover up, disguise, and gloss over the massive illegal immigration invasion that is balkanizing our country. Sadly, it is being propagated and proliferated by the media, Hispanic groups, and politicians, including our president. It is particularly galling and egregious when those euphemisms are followed by the mantra: "After all we are a nation of immigrants aren't we?" The response to that comment is: Legal immigrants YES . . . illegal immigrants, NO!
Others who participate in the illegal alien "cover-up," are the Hispanic and Latino groups like La Raza (The Race), LULAC, MALDEF, MEChA, Aztlan, who pose as 'immigrant-rights activists.' They loudly condemn any legislation denying "public benefits" to illegal aliens, such as Arizona's Prop. 200; and, when anyone has the temerity to speak out about the massive illegal immigration overwhelming America, they are branded "anti-immigrant." Hispanic and Latino groups have repeatedly called the Minutemen "anti-immigrant!" They NEVER say anti-illegal immigrant. The word illegal, is not in their vocabulary. They and their 'leaders' are deliberately obfuscating, duplicitous, hypocritical and dishonest! The national media routinely assists them in their campaign of disinformation. As such they both need to be admonished!
It is disingenuous for Hispanic and Latino groups to lobby in support of illegal aliens by promoting it as "immigrant-rights." By definition that term includes both legal and illegal immigrants! Their dissembling is then perpetuated by the media! The media's 'permission by omission' facilitates the Hispanic community, en masse, to remain unchallenged in their support for massive illegal immigration. Since the vast majority of the illegal aliens are Hispanic and Latino, their motives are without doubt, the purist form of racism there is! What have we come to in America, the land of laws, that we are expected to silently accept the duplicitous hypocrisy of such racist groups and their complicit media.
We need to demand that our media stop being part of the cover-up. We need to encourage them to use the proper legal term of "illegal alien" or "illegal immigrant" or "illegal" (whatever noun they choose) when they report in the future. When Hispanic and Latino "activists" make the fallacious charges of racism, xenophobia and label someone as "anti-immigrant," the follow-up question needs to be: "is that anti-legal immigrant or anti-illegal immigrant?" This simple 'accuracy check' will go a long way towards framing the public conversation about this serious, important problem of massive illegal immigration and its impact on our country.
Copyright © Daneen G. Peterson, Ph.D., 2009, All Rights Reserved