November 09, 2008

Lawyers who need a refresher on what the First Amendment means

Judge Bans Use Of “Illegal” and “Aliens.”

Arizona’s Supreme Court chief justice has agreed to enforce the Hispanic Bar Association’s demands of banning the terms “illegal” and “aliens” in all of the state’s courtrooms.

Claiming that the terms are inflammatory, the president of Arizona’s Hispanic Bar Association, (known as Los Abogados) has asked state Supreme Court Chief Justice Ruth McGregor to stop using them at trials or hearings because they create perceptions of judicial bias.

In a strongly worded letter to the chief justice, Los Abogados’ president says attaching an illegal status to a person establishes a brand of contemptibility, creates the appearance of anti-immigrant prejudice and tarnishes the image of courts as a place where disputes may be fairly resolved.

It further points out that no human being is illegal and that a national Hispanic journalism association has roundly criticized the reference for dehumanizing a segment of the population. The letter goes on to criticize the state’s High Court for using the term “illegals” in at least two opinions and the term “illegal aliens” in dozens of others.

It concludes with a list of acceptable and unacceptable terms relating to illegal immigration. Among those the group wants banned are: immigration crisis, immigration epidemic, open borders advocates, anchor babies and invaders. Among the acceptable terms are foreign nationals, unauthorized workers and human rights advocates. Click here to see the entire list as well as Chief Justice McGregor’s promise to enforce the requests.

I like that Hispanic lawyers' group name -- it translates to merely "The Lawyers." And I'm curious -- if a lawyer uses one of those banned terms in court, what'll happen to him/her? Get charged with contempt? Will he/she then sue the judge or court for violation of First Amendment rights?

Here are some other "acceptable terms" Los Abogados might want to consider (some taken from the comments section from the initial link, others from here):

  • "Undocumented pharmacists" for drug dealers.
  • "Physical property adjusters" for home robbery suspects.
  • "Unwanted house guest" for burglar.
  • "Deferred success" for failure.
  • "Pathologically High-Spirited" for psycho.
  • "Delaware Liberalish" for ridiculously hebetudinous.
Posted by Hube at November 9, 2008 10:20 AM | TrackBack

Comments  (We reserve the right to edit and/or delete any comments. If your comment is blocked or won't post, e-mail us and we'll post it for you.)

How could you forget "Nontraditional shoppers" during the LA Riots? Or Rush's "urban outdoorsmen"?

Posted by: Duffy at November 10, 2008 08:46 AM

Shoplifter= Cost of living adjustment specialist

Posted by: Fred Gregory at November 10, 2008 11:46 AM

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