Originally posted by ceci2006
A criminal is someone who is caught breaking the law. Otherwise, if they are breaking the law and no one sees them, then there is nothing to hold
them on in terms of criminality. And without being discovered breaking the law, does that make one a criminal?
Ahhh. A case of legal semantics. But if a serial killer doesn't get 'caught', it is my opinion that he's still a criminal. If I break the law,
regardless of whether or not I get caught and prosecuted, I have still commited a crime.
I guess by your definition, Goerge Bush is not a criminal...
Illegal, as a noun, is doing something not legal. As an adjective, "illegal(s)" is used to describe pejoratively people who have
immigrated here and are undocumented.
You have this backwards, but I do see your point. I always have. You think it's offensive to call someone an illegal. I'm sure some are offended by
it. And I say, "oh, well." I'm not a hard-hearted person and I do care about other people, but I'm only willing to coddle people so far. There is
a point when people have to stand up and take responsibility for what they're doing. There's a point when people have to be responsible for what
To call an illegal immigrant or an undocumented worker an "illegal" is no different to me than calling one who speeds a speeder. I'm sure to many,
it means something different. To you, there's a chance it might lead to something about race. Again, I'm not really that concerned. There are more
important things in the world than making sure no one's feelings are hurt and making sure everyone plays nice. To me.
"Illegal" in this sense, dehumanizes the subject so much so that they should not be considered humanely as anyone else.
Wow! Perhaps to you, it does. To me, not so much. I propose that your sensitivity to this word is wrapped up in other issues.
If you aren't concerned for all human beings, then by all means call them "illegals". But the use of the term really makes you seem disrepsectful
of another person's humanity and dignity when you do so.
I don't respect everyone. I don't respect people who sell drugs to children. I don't respect people who illegally download music from the Internet.
I don't respect people who drink and drive. Why should I respect someone who is mooching off my government? I don't respect legal citizens who do
Then why are some posters on this board, when referring to illegal immigrants, call them "trash" and "vermin" in reference to the subject matter?
Then, why do others talk about the "Mexican invasion"?
Because that's the way people are. Some people. People are narrow minded, people are racist, people are short-sighted. You aren't going to change
that by getting them to use a different word.
In American newspapers in the 18th and 19th century, it was acceptable to use the "n-word" to describe black people. Same type of word. Same
medium. Different times, except "illegal" is being replaced by the "n-word".
And how's that working out? I never hear white people use that word. There was a natural progression that took place and the N-word is now used
pretty exclusively by black people.
It's a word! If people wouldn't give it so much power, we wouldn't have to go through this progression.
If we called them "pinkbellies" people would eventually associate that with a derogatory meaning because what they're doing is breaking the law.
It's not the WORD that's bad, it's what they're doing that gives the word the negative connotation. Eventually, if everyone is forced to use the
term "undocumented worker" it will take on the same negative connotation because it's the ACT of coming into this country illegally that is the
problem, not the word.
It will be shortened to "undocumented" and used thusly: "Look at all the "undocs" over there... " Then people will be complaining that
"undocs" is pejorative. They'll want us all to change over to "guest resident", which at first, has no negative connotation, but eventually will
because many people don't like that they're here. That's not going to change with the change of the word.
A word is not going to garner respect for these people. Only their actions can do that.
[edit on 23-7-2006 by Benevolent Heretic]