Signs, signs, everywhere are signs

Arizona’s new immigration has, predictably, led to protests.   John Hawkins of Right Wing News chronicles some of the disturbing signs that the pro-illegal immigration protesters have been waving about.  Here’s my favorite:

These signs in and of themselves aren’t really relevant, but as Hawkins points out, outlets like the Huffington Post love to bring their cameras to tea party rallies to capture the “shocking” rhetoric they see there. It’s an astute parallel to draw: If you want to judge the tea partiers by their most extreme elements, don’t you have to judge the pro-illegal immigration movement the same way?

Doing either misses the bigger images that each movement brings to the table.  For instance, in many of the pictures Hawkins displays, extreme signs calling for the overthrow of America obscure protesters with American flags in the background.  The undercurrent of the immigration debate is a quest for the American dream, not the racist rhetoric on the signs – a revelation which puts the debate in a new perspective, even if you don’t agree with what they’re saying.

That might be a good lesson to kind in mind for those covering the tea parties, too.

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