The Corner

Now It’s “Undocumented American”

I have noticed lately that illegal aliens, er, undocumented immigrants, are now being called ”undocumented Americans” by advocates for “comprehensive immigration reform.” Latest example, a column by Ruben Navarrette, about a documentary by an illegal immigrant who has worked as a journalist:

After watching this inspirational film, I now realize that this undocumented American has a better understanding than I do of what this country is about.

Navarrette then asks:

How do I define American? It’s someone with courage, ingenuity, perseverance, work ethic, love of freedom. It’s someone who raises issues, raises consciousness and – if needed – raises hell.

Notice that the term, according to Navarrette, is completely unrelated to place or citizenship.

No! There are people living in China and Greece, Russia and Nigeria–and indeed, every country in the world, with those attributes. But that doesn’t make them “Americans,” which (as commonly used) is a synonym for “U.S. citizen.”

The Left is denuding language of all meaning in the name of ideology. (Hello George Orwell!) Non citizens, whether legal or undocumented, are not “Americans” by definition–unless all it takes now to be one is to have a toe on U.S. soil. That’s the real game that is afoot.

Mark my words, the  mainstream media will soon pick up the “undocumented American” trope. 

Wesley J. Smith — Wesley J. Smith is a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism.

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