Today's The Age carries this lengthy opinion piece by Warwick McFadyen.
It's a bit rich to have a go at Scott Morrison when he is simply identifying a problem (illegal breaches of our border by boat) and calling it what it is. Illegal. Something we are trying to stop.
I think you might be over-dramatising it Warwick - it's not that there's a grand anti-refugee conspiracy with coded language. It's simpler. It's illegal, people drown doing it, criminal networks are enriched every time it happens and the first step to stopping it is calling it out and not trying to justify it.
The minister for debasing the language
Well, refugees trying to arrive by whatever means you can, heed this: the tide has turned. You thought you were human. Sorry. You thought you would be granted a little sympathy. Sorry. You thought there might be a trickle of compassion for your plight. Sorry. You are now shipping news.
Compare the two phrases: "asylum seekers" versus "illegal maritime arrivals".
The conjoining of "asylum" and "seeker" is evocative. Who seeks asylum? A human in danger, distress and despair; someone who is hoping to survive on the lee shore of kindness. "Illegal" + "maritime" + "arrivals" = the draining of the human. It is using language to drive and empower ideology. Language shapes public policy and discourse.
By changing the terms of reference, Morrison is trying to control the debate. Kon Karapanagiotidis, chief executive of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, believes the change in terms is "profound" and that Morrison is "deliberately trying to dehumanise asylum seekers by making them less than human".
Warwick if you do happen upon this page I'd love to know your estimation of the probability that each of the following is "A human in danger, distress and despair; someone who is hoping to survive on the lee shore of kindness".