Wednesday, January 18th, 2017

Stop Calling People ‘Aliens’


"The use of the word “illegal” to describe non-citizens who are present in the United States without authorization is finally beginning to die a much-deserved death, at least in the mainstream press. ... Despite this trend, the term “alien” remains not only in popular use, but also in the federal statute, the Immigration and Nationality Act, that regulates immigration to the United States. ... All of this still begs the question: Why “alien”?  How did the specific term “alien” — which means not just non-citizen or non-national but, in a certain sense, non-person — become an accepted legal definition, and colloquial description, of the immigrant under U.S. law?  Would using a different word change the public’s attitude toward immigrants? And what does outer space have to do with it?" -