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Biden's proposed bill, if passed, would remove the word alien from US immigration laws, replacing it with the term noncitizen. It's a deliberate step intended to recognize America as a nation of immigrants, according to a summary of the bill released by the new administration. The term illegal alien, long decried as a dehumanizing slur by immigrant rights advocates, became even more of a lightning rod during the Trump era with some top federal officials encouraging its use and several states and local governments taking up measures to ban it. The language change on the first day of this administration, with Kamala Harris the daughter of immigrants, to me it's not just symbolic it's foundational, says Jose Antonio Vargas, an undocumented immigrant whose organization, Define American, pushes
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