USA_Passport_StampCreativity in avoiding the use of the term “illegal alien” for those who violate our immigration law seems to have no limits. The latest ploy appeared in a story about the huge surge in Cuban illegal immigration since President Obama launched his diplomatic opening to Cuba.

The July 20th article was the first we have seen to term Cuban illegal arrivals as “visa-less.” And to confuse the reader and presumably to evoke sympathy for the new illegal arrivers, they are described as “asylum-seekers.”

The article gets it right in identifying the surge in illegal immigration of Cubans provoked by Obama’s action – five times the number in 2011 – but it is misleading in suggesting that these new illegal arrivals are fleeing persecution and seeking asylum. While it is true that they are treated as if they are refugees, their claim to that status is fiction created by out-of-date law and procedures. If the same new Cuban arrivals had been intercepted at sea and given the chance to argue that they should be treated as refugees seeking asylum, the vast majority of them would have had their claims rejected, and they would have been sent back to Cuba.