October 14, 2011, - 12:30 pm

Society of Pro Journalists Votes Not to Use “Illegal Alien,” “Illegal Immigrant”

By Debbie Schlussel

Hey, it’s just like the Obama administration, Rick Perry, and Chris Christie.  Apparently, there really is no such thing as an “illegal alien” or an “illegal immigrant.”  Or, rather, that’s the fantasyland in which they and the Society of Professional Journalists would have you believe.  Question:  is denying reality a job qualification to call yourself a “professional journalist?”  Apparently so.  Don’t forget that the Society of Professional Journalists, for years, gave out a Helen Thomas Award, despite Thomas’ career history of openly endorsing anti-Semitism and Jew-hatred. Interesting that this absurd decision was endorsed by prominent (but completely incompetent) Republican political consultant John Truscott (who is Lebanese and takes money from Hezbollah clients).



Illegal Aliens in the US Say, “Shukran & Gracias, ‘Journalist’ Morons!”

The Society of Professional Journalists, hearing an emotional plea from Rebecca Aguilar, a member of SPJ and of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, voted Tuesday [DS: end of September] to recommend that newsrooms discontinue using the terms “illegal alien” and “illegal immigrant.” The resolution from the 7,800-member organization says only courts can decide when a person has committed an illegal act.

Aguilar argued that using those words insulted Latinos and all those who are or had once been in the United States illegally. She used the example of her mother, who became a “proud American” in 1980. Her mother felt insulted “every time she heard that word,” Aguilar said of the phrase “illegal alien.”

“She turned the tide,” the new president-elect, Sonny Albarado, projects editor of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette in Little Rock, said of Aguilar. “She delivered the statement with such passion. After that, there was just a great overwhelming outpouring of support.” Aguilar, a freelance broadcaster in Dallas, is a board member of NAHJ and of the Fort Worth SPJ chapter, was an SPJ “diversity fellow,” and is a new member of SPJ’s Diversity Committee.

The resolution, introduced by the SPJ Diversity Committee at the Excellence in Journalism convention in New Orleans, was originally rejected by the Resolutions Committee. Its members recommended that objections be brought to the stylebook committee of the Associated Press, Albarado said. . . .

Jeremy Steele, a member of the Diversity Committee who is director of media relations for the John Truscott Group in Lansing, Mich., tweaked the language into something more acceptable, said Albarado, who would follow Fred Brown and Robert Leger as an SPJ president of Latino heritage, Alborado said Thursday.

You should note that the John Truscott Group, is a Republican political consulting group that many so-called conservative Republicans use to run (and lose) their campaigns. Truscott, who is half Lebanese, took on Hezbollah agent Ali Jawad as one of his clients, after I got the John McCain campaign to dump Jawad, a convicted insurance defrauder and open supporter and financier of the Islamic terrorist group that murdered hundreds of Americans. In attacking me, Truscott said, on Detroit’s WJR radio station, that “we Republicans don’t discriminate against Hezbollah.” Truscott ran former Republican Congressman Pete Hoekstra’s losing campaign for Governor of Michigan and is reportedly running his campaign for the Republican nomination to the U.S. Senate.

The motion passed on a voice vote.

“I hope that it makes a statement about sensitivity to language. It has an effect on the people it refers to,” Albarado said. “I hope it shows people that journalists are concerned about being accurate when they refer to people, plus I hope it helps shape the discussion.”

The resolution reads:

“WHEREAS, the Society of Professional Journalists Code of Ethics urges all journalists to be ‘honest, fair and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting information’ and;

“WHEREAS, mainstream news reports are increasingly using the politically charged phrase ‘illegal immigrant’ and the more offensive and bureaucratic ‘illegal alien’ to describe undocumented immigrants, particularly Latinos and;

“WHEREAS, a fundamental principle embedded in our U.S. Constitution is that everyone (including non-citizens) is considered innocent of any crime until proven guilty in a court of law and;

“WHEREAS, this constitutional doctrine, often described as ‘innocent-until-proven-guilty,’ applies not just to U.S. Citizens but to everyone in the United States and;

“WHEREAS, only the court system, not reporters and editors, can decide when a person has committed an illegal act and;

“WHEREAS, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists is also concerned with the increasing use of pejorative and potentially inaccurate terms to describe the estimated 11 million undocumented people living in the United States;

“THEREFORE, be it resolved that the Society of Professional Journalists convention of delegates: urges journalists and style guide editors to stop the use of illegal alien and encourage continuous discussion and re-evaluation of the use of illegal immigrant in news stories.”

Yup, we’re living in a world where you simply can’t tell the truth about people who are here illegally and breaking the law by being here. Instead, up is down, left is right, and reality is nowhere to be seen if you get yours through the clouded eyes of the mainstream media.

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57 Responses

George Orwell’s Newspeak was all about the destruction of words. If you don’t have a word for it, you can’t have a thought about it. Well, as the Daddy of two beautiful LEGAL Hispanics adopted from Guatemala, and a guy who paid OUT OF STATE Tuition that went up 1000 PERCENT when I attended UTMB School of Medicine at Galveston, let me say “Screw You” back to Illegal Aliens and instate tuition for illegal aliens.


Occam's Tool on October 14, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    You are correct, sir. In state tuition for law breakers is a slap in the face of LEGAL immigrants and all Americans. Let’s reward crime and encourage more of them to come over here. This issue really gets me fired up, so I better walk away from the keyboard.

    WilliamMunny on October 14, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    Right On! You have it right. That’s why I don’t support fellow Aggie, Rick Perry, for the Republican nomination for President.

    texag57 on October 17, 2011 at 11:20 am

    last year that illegals is a pevjiatroe term 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. [emphasis mine] NAHJ calls on the media to never use illegals’ in headlines. This year, the Associated Press, which apparently sets the grammar and usage standards of newswriting, came out and declared that the proper term is illegal immigrant and not illegal alien or undocumented worker. And Do not use the shortened term illegals’ AP says. For no other people committing illegal acts do we call them illegals : so why with immigrants? That seems either lazy or just plain racist. I’ve had a hard time thinking of parallel examples that are as insulting, and I invite people to weigh in with examples. The best I’ve come up with is how during WWII, newspaper headlines in America always had Japs short for Japanese and Nips short for Nipponese. Sure, it fits nicely into a tight headline space, but come on, that’s pretty repulsive. Also, run this through your mind: would you call a [white] Canadian national who overstayed his/her student visa an illegal ? Or a [white] British national? See how your mind automatically recoils at the thought? Why is that?

    Tukioumaru on November 21, 2012 at 2:39 am

Hello Debbie Schlussel and All

WHAT??!! So, if someone is witnessed stealing, murdering or parking in a red no-parking zone, only the courts can determine whether or not the act is “illegal”??!!

Wow….this really presents a quandry. Why did we go after Bin Laden and the American-born Muslim in Yemen if they hadn’t been found to be guilty by our court system of any “illegal” act??

INFINITE on October 14, 2011 at 1:04 pm

This country is an insane asylum run by the inmates.

Arejaymack on October 14, 2011 at 3:50 pm

I was going to make a similar comment about Orwell, but Occam’s Tool beat me to it.

Little Al on October 14, 2011 at 5:26 pm

They are correct, most of these people are not simply “illegal aliens”, they are American hating, La Raza Cosmica racist foreign invaders practicing reconquista. I say we should all call them foreign invaders in online forums and letters to the editor.

John Bowman on October 14, 2011 at 5:29 pm

    Look, many of these people are just trying to make a living. They aren’t educated enough to even get the politics. The real problem arises from the agenda the left has, replace longtime Americans with a more pliable population, and the hispanic fifth columnist leaders connected to the left. They smell the prospect of immense political power, and use these poor uneducated people to basically threaten Americans. Thus the marches across the U.S. Does anyone believe they were organized by these poor mestizo’s. Nope, they were organized by democrat leftists and hispanic power groups, many of those people educated right here, and who are now willing to screw the very population whos taxes educated them.

    Bobby on October 17, 2011 at 11:43 pm

I’m not sure this makes any difference at all. Just about everyone in the country knows that ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC, etc. are all illegal alien-sucking filth. Perhaps if the invasion and occupation goes on much longer and all hell breaks lose, the personnel of these propoganda outlets will be the first ones to have their skulls kicked in. The most dangerous organizations in this country belong to the media and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, hands down.

ZOO on October 14, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    Absolutely true.

    Bobby on October 17, 2011 at 11:45 pm

OT, GREAT reference to Orwell’s 1984. I still shudder because I read it back in High School in 1983 and because I was a Mondale/Ferraro supporter back in actual 84 (another shudder of epic proportions!!!!) I remember reading it and erroneously thinking that “Jeez, this is what happens when Republicans take over”. I grew up in the bluest state and it is quite clear that I had NO IDEA of what the hell I thought I knew about politics. If I was enlightened and educated, I would have been a Reagan supporter.

I now know that it was all about SOCIALISM. I re-read the book every year, too. The one part that I did comprehend quite rightly is that the upper party members got better and special treatment. That bothered me and the thought never left me.

Jo-WHORE-nalism is dead and gone in 2011. As a hispanic female, I don’t (nor did I EVER) buy that “no one is illegal” crap and ALL illegal aliens bug me because they cheat, they lie, they steal identities and they DON’T love this country.

When you really love a country, you would NEVER consider living illegally. I want to go to Australia so badly I can taste it but I would NEVER step foot in Australia illegally. No one would if they TRUELY loved a country.

The hack journalists need to be called out. They are shameless, they have an agenda and they are hypocrites!

Skunky on October 14, 2011 at 7:12 pm

A rose by any other name is still a rose.
A turd by any other name still smells like a turd.
Illegal/Undocumented Alien or Immigrant still equals Criminal.

F’n PC hacks…Pretty words don’t change a thing.

theShadow on October 14, 2011 at 9:30 pm

why not
just call them
what they are


prestigio on October 14, 2011 at 10:02 pm

I just visited the SPJ web site. Indeed, it is all there, in plain English. I also found the senior staff page, at http://www.spj.org/hq.asp, with e-mail addresses and I am going to write them all. I am a legal immigrant and I am deeply offended by this perversity. The idiots help destroy their own country and if this happens, they will be among the first to perish. I know how to survive among the thugs. They do not.

Immortal_Rabinowitz on October 14, 2011 at 10:21 pm

To Debbie Schlussel:
thank you for alerting us. Was this on Drudge yet? I think America must know.
Thank you.

Immortal_Rabinowitz on October 14, 2011 at 10:24 pm

So I guess journalists can no longer refer to a person who just robbed a bank as a “bank robber” because only a court can determine whether the person who robbed that bank has committed an illegal act.

Sophia on October 14, 2011 at 10:34 pm

    That’s why most “news” articles about crimes over-use/misuse the word “alleged”, as in “the alleged suspect of the alleged crime”.

    Doda McCheesle on October 17, 2011 at 1:03 pm

The SPJ is not a genuine society group for journalism, just a society of professional whitewashers and propagandists.

Throw SPJ out of the USA.

Bob on October 15, 2011 at 12:26 am

The Brains Behind ‘Occupy Wall Street’

Kalle Lasn: Meet the second most evilest man in the world (after George Soros).


Mallory on October 15, 2011 at 9:09 am

About Soros

Soros has been actively working to destroy America from the inside out for some years now. People have been warning us. Two years ago news sources reported that “Soros [is] an extremist who wants open borders, a one-world foreign policy, legalized drugs, euthanasia, and on and on. This is off-the-chart dangerous.”

Although Soros doesn’t (yet) own the Republican Party, like he does the Democrats, make no mistake, his tentacles are spread throughout the Republican Party as well.


Mallory on October 15, 2011 at 9:13 am

    Mallory, “legalized” drugs is one of the few things Soros gets right. Actually, it’s marijiuana that Soros sponsors legalizing.

    In a supposedly free country, the gov’t has no right to protect people from themselves,even something as stupid and dangerous as drugs. This is what liberty is about.

    This country managed to survive long before the creation of drug laws,DEA, and the war on drugs.

    Scott on October 16, 2011 at 1:25 pm

Who cares if illegal aliens are insulted by being called what they are? If you don’t want to be insulted, obey the rules and follow the law. Otherwise,don’t come here, and definitely don’t stay here.

Linky Drake on October 15, 2011 at 11:14 am

Commonplace words of 50 years ago which had been used to describe race, religion, ethnicity, origin have been so ruled out by political correctness or rather liberal stupidity that we are left with few words to describe anybody or anything. Of course we still have the f word and the m….r word which our wordless population use constantly.

Jerry on October 15, 2011 at 11:42 am

Illegal alien insults Latinos??????? And their illegal presence here does not insult us??????

G. R. SCHAROUBIM on October 15, 2011 at 11:46 am

Journalism has changed over the last few decades. The issues reported in the newspapers, on radio, and TV today are for the most part distorted. If a journalist wants to keep his/her job, then doing what the boss wants is necessary. The American people for the most part do not have a clue what is going on in the world, and this is directly related to what they are told by the media.

Fred on October 15, 2011 at 12:09 pm

6 000 000 was not enough…

Amel on October 15, 2011 at 2:17 pm

    Yeah, there’s 1,000,000,000 muslims.

    Die young, before you reproduce.

    Frak on October 17, 2011 at 1:05 pm

      I ment 6 000 000 jews was not enough…

      Amel on October 17, 2011 at 2:09 pm

      W W 2 we should do it again…

      Amel on October 17, 2011 at 2:10 pm

    Six people on this earth such as yourself is too many.

    JF on October 17, 2011 at 10:38 pm

      We’re almoust up to 2 000 000 000 soget used to it…

      Amel on October 19, 2011 at 12:13 pm

A teeny-weenie number of people decide what words can and can’t be used by the majority of journalists….

Their big excuse/Doublespeak, will be:”Hey,we VOTED on it! That’s what they do in free societies,riiiiiiiiight?!We decided this democratically! So there’s nothing to worry about.”

Apparently,these monkeys are ignorant about what Freedom of Speech TRULY means.

Phineas on October 15, 2011 at 4:48 pm

And how many times did the press talk about George Bush’s “illegal use of power” or other “illegal actions”?

Most uses of the term “illegal alien” are generic in any case; they refer to descriptions of actions which are illegal, such as not giving financial aid to illegal aliens. In such usage, court cases are not even an issue, as the description limits itself to those guilty of the offense.

Little Al on October 16, 2011 at 8:20 am

Once again the cockroaches are exposed by the Debbie spot light.

samurai on October 16, 2011 at 2:05 pm

I just call them CHEATERS. Everything about illegal aliens is cheating. Blood sucking cheating vampires.

CaliforniaScreaming on October 16, 2011 at 4:17 pm

So, if I shoplifted a store(using Aguilar’s logic), you could not refer to my action as illegal until I was convicted in a court? Well, isn’t that peachy. It is nice to know that we have racial and ethnic exclusions for crime now.

worry01 on October 16, 2011 at 5:07 pm

It is nice to knows that the Society of Professional Journalists, which you referred to in your article, now advocates race and ethnically based definitions of crime. Is this not simply “Jim Crow” turned on its head?

“The Society of Professional Journalists, hearing an emotional plea from Rebecca Aguilar, a member of SPJ and of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, voted Tuesday [DS: end of September] to recommend that newsrooms discontinue using the terms “illegal alien” and “illegal immigrant.” The resolution from the 7,800-member organization says only courts can decide when a person has committed an illegal act.”

Really? So, does that mean that people cannot refer to shoplifters, burglars, rapists, or murders as people who commit illegal acts? Are we going back to Ancien Régime days when whether what you did was considered a serious offense depended upon your rank in society? Or, even worse, if you were especially privileged you would be immune from any sanction at all being imposed for ordinary crimes. Is this progress? Are we citizens who possess the Rights of Men or a medieval hodge podge where justice is meted out or ignored based upon your social status? Did not people fight and die in the United States, France, and other countries to obliterate such distinctions? Are we sinking back into aristocratic notions disguised as progressive egalitarianism? Whether it is a racial entitlement to in-state tuition or not having the wrongs you have committed deemed to be of any importance, is that not akin to the exemptions from taxes and other obligations that the old elites enjoyed through birth? Why should I not find Rebecca Aguilar to be nothing more than a grotesque special pleader who apparettly has no problem with the fact that murderous drug cartels in Mexico are deeply involved in smuggling would be “illegals” into the country. As for her mother, why should I respect what she did any more than I would someone who committed fraud? Was Rebecca the anchor baby?

worry01 on October 16, 2011 at 8:43 pm

t just gets tiresome to see mainstream groups acquiescing to unlawful behavior. Would I receive reciprocal rights in Mexico if I overstayed a visa or simply planted myself in Guadalajara?

worry01 on October 16, 2011 at 9:26 pm

Terrorists: The Other Illegal Immigrants.
Not all illegal aliens crossing our borders are looking to take advantage of the American way of life; some are looking to destroy it.

JamesP on October 17, 2011 at 4:18 am

Kim Kardashian Wears Burqa In Dubai (PHOTO, VIDEO)


JamesP on October 17, 2011 at 4:35 am

“The National Association of HISPANIC Journalists”?!?

Where’s the National Association of U.S. Journalists? Or National Association of Non-Colored _______ (fill in the blank- Journalists, Congresspeople, People, College Student, Athletes, whatever)?? Oh yeah– such a thing would be…. RAAAAACCCCISSSSSTTTT!!!!

BTW- what would the Southwestern USA be like today if the USA had never “conquered” and “occupied” it? Oh yeah, it would be like the rest of Mexico- a disgusting, worthless turd-world criminal infested hive of corrupt scum and villainy.

Frak on October 17, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    It would basically be what it’ always been before European-Americans turned it into a paradise. Scorpions, rattlesnakes and cactuses. Case closed.

    Bobby on October 17, 2011 at 11:35 pm

“Society of professional journalists?” Now, there’s an oxymoron. The “Diversity committee?” Moronic. These folks are laughable. Propagandists all, not “Journalists.” Yes, 1984 is here……just a few years late.

Herbster on October 17, 2011 at 1:53 pm



Amel on October 17, 2011 at 2:14 pm

*Muslim alert*

And that’s Amel, more and more of us in this country are standing up to you and you’re ilk Amel of wanting some type of sharia/islamic law in this country. It ain’t going to happen in my time, nor it’s not going to in my kids time (when I get marry and have kids) and in their kids-kids time, etc. It’s clear to me that you want hundreds of years of darkness and backwardness instead of moving forward and maintaining freedom/liberty!

“A nation is defined by its borders, language & culture!”

Sean R. on October 17, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    Are you jewish sean cuz you sound like one…

    Which nation,the great INDIANS YOU KILLED.

    Amel on October 17, 2011 at 5:11 pm

The answer to you’re first sentence is NO, I’m not jewish. Second, you seem to be pretty ignorant of US history, the Native Americans did terrible things amongst themselves before the “white-settlers” (or sooners) founded America, these are facts!

Not only are you a vile anti-semite, but you’re also anti-american as well! I know you’re damn types Amel, I grew up and went to school with folks of you’re ilk so you’re not fooling me Amel.

“A nation is defined by its borders, language & culture!”

Sean R. on October 17, 2011 at 7:47 pm

Stupid leftist morons.(99percent of all media) United States Immigration Law, FOR YOUR INFORMATION, YOU MORONIC LEFTIST PIECES OF ….ALREADY CALLS THEM ILLEGAL ALIENS. THAT IS THE “LEGAL” TERM YOU TROUBLERS OF AMERICANS. Anyhow, it doesn’t matter, we in the alternative media, will continue to lawfully call them illegal aliens and you can call them anything you want to.

Bobby on October 17, 2011 at 11:33 pm

The hispanic power groups, whom all support illegal immigration, have learned well from the democrat left. They always use terminology like, “undocumented”, “human rights issues” etc. for illegal aliens, and terms like racists”, “bubbas”, “white trash”, “exclusionary” “haters”, and so on, for American citizens that have a different view of illegal immigration. They have learned the lesson, that words determine how people will eventually think, because as Aristotle said two thousand years plus ago, to paraphrase,

We think with images, and cannot think or even reason without images.

Now picture those word and think about it, who wants to be a bubba, or a racist, or a white trash,etc.? Toothless, violent and living in a trailer. See how it works?

Bobby on October 17, 2011 at 11:56 pm

Last comment. Some of the nicest and kindest people I’ve ever met, have lived in a trailer. When I used to measure for carpet installations, it was these folks, that would always offer me a cool drink on a hot day. The people with the big two story houses,etc. would basically tell me to get it done and get lost. So I’m kind of sick of people acting so smug and denigrating folks that live in trailers, for whatever reason.

Bobby on October 18, 2011 at 12:03 am

There are literally millions of men, women, and children who stood in lines, filled out forms, and did whatever else had to be done to enter this country legitimately. When someone decides to screw the rules and come here illegally, they are spitting in the face of every person who followed the rules, and every person currently standing in line waiting to enter legitimately.

But I bet that if someone cut in front of them at a supermarket cash register they’d pitch a fit.

Joel V on October 19, 2011 at 10:03 pm

Saying someone is an “undocumented citizen” is like saying a drug dealer is an “undocumented pharmacist.”

Alex on October 20, 2011 at 2:45 pm

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