In the face of mounting pressure from activist campaigns like "Drop the I-Word," the Associated Press announced today that it would continue using the term "illegal immigrants" in its immigration coverage if and when the situation calls for it. Drop the I-Word and its proponents—like journalist Jose Antonio Vargas, himself an illegal immigrant—argue that media outlets using the word "illegal" to describe people is a "racially charged" tactic that "confuses the immigration debate and fuels violence." Critics would rather newspapers and wire services use terms like "undocumented immigrant" or "unauthorized immigrant," instead. Despite those protestations, however, the AP appears to be resolute in its decision.
Behold the first election-year bombshell: Barack Obama's White House will announce this morning that it will unilaterally begin granting work permits to as many as 800,000 illegal immigrants who arrived in the United States as children, graduated from high school, and stayed out of trouble with the law. He's essentially implemented the much-debated DREAM Act, only without the hassle of all that voting in Congress. He should have done this with health care!