Culver City Observer -

By Letters 

Dear Editor

 

December 11, 2014



I am writing to the Culver City Observer to urge the writing staff to reconsider using the terminology "Illegal Aliens" when reporting about issues related to immigration.

Language is a powerful tool, as you all journalists know. The language used in this article may be offensive for immigrants and undocumented people in Culver City. From the recent census, Culver City's population of foreign born people is roughly 24% and the Latino or Hispanic population is 23.2%, and the city of Los Angeles is reportedly 48%.

I mention the Latino population in Culver City because they are a significant portion of the population (2nd largest). Issues surrounding immigration largely affect the Latino population in the United States. I mention the percentage of Latinos in Los Angeles because Culver City is largely bordered by the city of Los Angeles.

I hope that the staff takes this into consideration. I have attended Culver City schools my entire life and continue to participate in my community alongside many latino and hispanic families and friends. I have many connections with Latino families in Culver City and beyond.

I urge you to reconsider this revision and possible policy change as the Associated Press and New York Times have made such shifts in their respective language manuals in 2013. These news outlets use illegal when referring to an action, not a person. Example: "illegal immigration," not "illegal immigrant."

The Times Shifts on 'Illegal Immigrant', But Doesn't Ban The Use: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/24/business/media/the-times-shifts-on-illegal-immigrant-but-doesnt-ban-the-use.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

The article headline in question can be found here: http://www.culvercityobserver.com/story/2014/11/27/news/bass-supports-president-on-illegal-aliens/4367.html

Philip Bennett

Culver City

 

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