From the September 1 edition of MSNBC's All In with Chris Hayes:
JOY REID (HOST): Hold on a second. Let me stop you right there. Let me stop you just one second. I'm going to stop you right there. You are Hispanic, Steve. Are you comfortable with that term, “illegals?” That is a pejorative to a lot of people. Why do you use that term?
STEVE CORTES: You know why, Joy? Because words matter, OK?
REID: Yeah they do.
CORTES: And because if you do something that is against the law, it's illegal. If you go into a store and you shoplift, you're not an undocumented holder of a good, you're a thief. If you come to the United States against the immigration laws of the United States, you're not undocumented, you're illegal.
REID: Do you consider a child -- hold on a second. First of all, do you consider a child who was brought into this country, the people who are eligible for DACA, who were children when they came here, you would label that person essentially the equivalent of a shoplifter or a thief?
CORTES: No, because they had no choice in the matter.
REID: Well, that's what you just said.
CORTES: No, I did not, I did not say that at all. They had no choice in the matter.
REID: So you don't think -- you wouldn't call a child eligible for DACA an “illegal?” You wouldn't use that term with that child?
CORTES: I would not, because they didn't have a choice. A shoplifter has a choice, an illegal alien has a choice. A child did not have a choice, so no.
REID: That's fascinating that you, as a person of color, would use that term.
CORTES: Joy, listen, I would have a softer tone on illegals. All right?
REID: Can you do me a favor? Steve, just, while you're talking to me, can you not use that terminology? But go on.
CORTES: No, I will not do you that favor, because the English language matters. It matters that we use terms that are -- they are illegal, they're here illegally. We can't get over that. My father came here legally.
REID: My parents came here as immigrants too, Steve. You know what, my parents came here too so congratulations on that.
CORTES: Millions of Hispanics came here legally, so no, I'm not going to agree to your terms and use code words, that's absurd.
REID: You just used a code word.