The concept of illegal immigration into the United States does not exist, according to a new piece by men’s magazine GQ.
The GQ piece, headlined “There Is No Such Thing As An Illegal Immigrant”, argues they do not actually exist but the term is used by Trump and Breitbart News to “separate and distance” Americans:
It is that policy that Donald Trump took issue with, describing Merkel as having “made one very catastrophic mistake and that was taking all of these illegals.” In doing so, Trump used the dehumanising language that won him so much support in America, but technically speaking there is no such thing as an “illegal” or even an “illegal immigrant” – this is language designed to separate and distance us from a particular sort of criminal behaviour, which we do not use in other contexts.
GQ writer Rupert Myers ties Trump’s criticism of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s open borders migrant policy back to Russian President Vladimir Putin, saying that like Trump, Putin prefers “nation states” rather than the “post-war ideals that underpin alliances like NATO and the European Union.”
GQ’s biggest tiff with Trump in the piece goes directly back to his use of the term “illegal immigrant” and “illegal alien”:
In America, Trump’s use of “illegals” to describe human beings is nothing new, but it is still divisive.
Rallies were held in 50 cities across the USA last weekend, organised by civil rights groups who wanted a “Day of Action” to protest against Trump’s rhetoric and his approach to illegal immigration. Describing someone illegal “is an offensive term that dehumanises the individual,” said one Californian lawyer. And in the words of the Trump-supporting website Breitbart, “Hundreds of illegal aliens rallied in downtown Los Angeles”. The race to the bottom in the debate about illegal immigration is surely to describe people as “aliens” – to describe people as other, inhuman, to alienate them.
GQ argues that “it is the act which is illegal, rather than the person.”
The men’s magazine acknowledges that language policing, political correctness and “snowflake thought police” railed against by Trump and Breitbart News is losing in mainstream culture, possibly evident by Trump’s victory:
For Trump supporters, this is the sort of language-policing sentiment that they are rebelling against. Political correctness gone mad, the intolerance of the snowflake thought police. It is worth remembering that the snowflakes are losing the battle, as there is evidence to show that “illegal” is the most common term attached to articles about migrants in the press, and there is a solid argument to be made that politicians should talk to the public in a language that they understand and use themselves, rather than in the sort of technical babble that leaves “plain speaking” to politicians like Donald Trump.
GQ also admits at the end of the piece the logical reasoning behind calling illegal immigration exactly what it is, writing that the term “is a significant one, describing as it does the important difference between men and women who have done everything right, and those who have broken laws.”