This yearâ€™s Halloween costumes for sale include one adult jumpsuit with a space alien mask and the words â€œILLEGAL ALIENâ€ printed across the chest. This has upset a Los Angeles immigrant rights group, who feels it is â€œracistâ€, that it hurts the sensitivities of people from south of the border who are illegally in the USA. Target took it off its website (it was not available in stores), but other sites were selling out of the costume, no doubt helped by the publicity of the group who objected.
The costume, of course, was a play on words intended as a bit of fun. The same kind of pun is made at the beginning of the movie Men in Black, here at the border between the USA and Mexico. Unlike the movie, there was nothing on the Halloween costume that specifically targeted Hispanic illegal aliens, though the sales spiel did make that reference in a humorous way. (â€œHe didn’t just cross a border, he crossed a galaxy! He’s got his green card, but it’s from another planet!â€)
This is not the only illegal alien costume. There is another costume that those groups have not objected to. This is theÂ â€œsexy illegal alienâ€ costume, and this one clearly refers to Mexican illegal aliens through its pointed use of a sombrero and handcuffs.
My objection is not to the costume or to the outcry by some groups against it. These kinds of objections are symptomatic of our hypersensitive P.C. society, something we have to put up with as part of wanting to respect all people. However, do we have to sacrifice our sense of humor?
The irony is that â€œsexy illegal alienâ€ costume, which was not objected to, is actually more objectionable than the â€œadult illegal alienâ€ one, because it is sexist, it pointedly refers to Mexicans, it suggests they should be handcuffed, and it is almost totally without humor. (You do get shades with it, shaped like â€œalienâ€ eyes.)
I do object to groups fudging the distinction between legal and illegal immigrants. They say they are concerned about the rights of â€œallâ€ immigrants, but they do more damage to the acceptance of legal immigration than good, as they continue to advocate and encourage acceptance of illegal activity.