The Los Angeles Times gave free press to artists who are against the Arizona immigration law on June 2. In “Arizona Law Spurs Backlash Among Artists,” author Reed Johnson documented what lefty artists are doing to help overturn the law, without presenting a single quote dissenting from the liberal artists’ positions.
Johnson inaccurately characterized the public as “deeply deeply divided over the Arizona law…” He must not have seen the Pew poll that found 59 percent of Americans approve of the law or the Wall Street Journal and NBC poll that discovered that 64 percent surveyed approve of the law. In an election, either number would constitute a landslide.
But to Johnson those figures pale in comparison to the “growing clout of U.S. Latinos both as voters and cultural consumers.” Because of that clout, he wrote, “a number of prominent artists, both Latino and non-Latino, are urging fans to protest Arizona's controversial new statute.”
Johnson dutifully reported without challenge the inane and erroneous statements of various artists. Singer Willie Nelson, who sang in the song “Si Puede Si” (translated to “Yes We Can”) said, “These folks are coming to us the way immigrants have always come to us. We really need to welcome these people.”
Rage Against the Machine’s Zack De la Rocha was quoted as worrying his fans would be, “pulled over and harassed … because they are brown or black, or for the way they speak, or for the music they listen to.”
Performance artist and photographer Harry Gamboa Jr. created a logo design reading: “Boycott Hate State.” Johnson reported that, “Gamboa said the current controversy reminded him of the civil rights movement of his youth. But he doesn’t believe that those who support the Arizona law are representative of U.S. popular sentiment as a whole.”
“So far it appears that few, if any, prominent musicians or artists have stepped forward publicly to support the Arizona law,” Johnson wrote, telling us more about liberal groupthink than anything else.
He also documented how, musicians, “are recording songs in support of the millions of immigrants” and it doesn’t matter what “their legal status” is. Johnson also reported that a “growing number of other musical performers” have pledged not to perform in Arizona.
Curiously, no Arizonans were asked to react to that threat.