QUOTE OF THE DAY…. When Fox News personalities start tackling political correctness on the air, they’re bound to get into trouble.

Take today, for example. The Society of Professional Journalists is encouraging media organizations to steer clear of phrases like “illegal aliens” in favor of “undocumented immigrant.” Fox News anchor/activist Megyn Kelly hosted a segment on the issue, and headed straight for the slippery slope.

“How far could you take this?” Kelly asked. “You could say that a burglar is an unauthorized visitor. You know, you could say that a rapist is a non-consensual sex partner which, obviously, would be considered offensive to the victims of those crimes.”


Yes, in Megyn Kelly’s mind, there’s a reasonable comparison to be drawn between “alien” immigrants and “non-consensual sex partner” rapists.

And lest anyone think the Fox News personality just got caught up in the moment and said something she didn’t mean to say, Kelly then pressed a representative of the Women’s Media Center on this point, asking, “What if there was a push by the criminal defense… bar to re-brand the use of the word rapist to nonconsensual sex partner?”

In other words, she clearly considered this a fair rhetorical comparison.

Kelly, one of the Republican network’s more cringe-worthy figures, went on to lament political correctness in general: “You know, we did a segment earlier in the year on how little people find the term midget offensive, and so you can’t say that anymore. There’s so many words that are suddenly becoming hurtful, and part of the group thinks it’s hurtful, and the other group doesn’t, and you’re left as a journalist saying, I don’t know what to do.”

Here’s a tip, Megyn: call people whatever they want to be called. It’s really not that complicated; even Fox News personalities should be able to keep it straight.

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.