In his New York Times op-ed column today, the Times' former executive editor Bill Keller addressed readers' objections to his use of the term "illegals" as what he called "shorthand for 'illegal immigrants.' "
Keller writes that he hadn't personally objected to the term, that he used it "only to refer to people who are actually in this country illegally," and that the Times' existing style guide hadn't been much help as guidance. So he turned to Philip B. Corbett, who writes for the Times on grammar, usage and style. Corbett's take? Steer clear.
Keller shared what Corbett wrote to him: