Study: Actually, there aren’t many racist signs at tea-party rallies after all

posted at 6:42 pm on October 14, 2010 by Allahpundit

First we find out that “shovel-ready jobs” don’t really exist, now this. Who knows what other “surprises” lie ahead this month as the growing inevitability of Democratic doom makes unpleasant truths safe for liberals to utter?

There were uglier messages, too – including “Obama Bin Lyin’ – Impeach Now” and “Somewhere in Kenya a Village is Missing its Idiot.” But Ekins’s analysis showed that only about a quarter of all signs reflected direct anger with Obama. Only 5 percent of the total mentioned the president’s race or religion, and slightly more than 1 percent questioned his American citizenship.

Ekins’s conclusion is not that the racially charged messages are unimportant but that media coverage of tea party rallies over the past year have focused so heavily on the more controversial signs that it has contributed to the perception that such content dominates the tea party movement more than it actually does.

“Really this is an issue of salience,” Ekins said. “Just because a couple of percentage points of signs have those messages doesn’t mean the other people don’t share those views, but it doesn’t mean they do, either. But when 25 percent of the coverage is devoted to those signs, it suggests that this is the issue that 25 percent of people think is so important that they’re going to put it on a sign, when it’s actually only a couple of people.”

Plenty of opportunities for lefty spin here — Ekins was a summer intern for an outfit sympathetic to the tea party agenda (the Cato Institute), the survey of signs was done at only one rally (the 9/12 Taxpayer March in D.C.), etc — but there’s nothing new or surprising in the findings. Michael Moynihan of Reason, which is also sympathetic to tea partiers, has been to multiple rallies and saw almost nothing racist. Liberals as prominent as John Judis have defended the movement from racism charges even while condemning its policy platform as a “menace;” in fact, liberal challenges to the “tea party is racist” smear were running in WaPo, the same paper that reported on Ekins’s study, as far back as six months ago. Even James Carville’s polling firm, as Verum Serum reminds us, attacked the narrative about tea-party racism last year, telling the media to “get over it” and focus on the far more salient ideological divisions inside the movement.

The irony is, you actually don’t hear much of the “tea party is racist” argument anymore. It’s still there, but it’s useful chiefly as a counterattack when TPers are challenging Obama. That’s why it was such a hot meme earlier this year when the ObamaCare battle was approaching its final act. Since then, without any major new Obama legislation to target, tea partiers have spent more time culling RINOs from the herd in Republican primaries than beating up on The One. Hence the narrative shift from “tea partiers are racist” to “tea partiers are crazy/unfit for office,” which is much more widely applicable to vulnerable Democratic candidates nationwide than the racial smear is. No worries, though: It’ll be back next year, right around the time Obama’s reelection campaign gets going in earnest. Enjoy this respite while it lasts.


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and Andrew Breitbart still has his $100K….

memes.destroyed.

ted c on October 14, 2010 at 6:45 PM

O/T

Just had ABC with Diane Sawyer on (don’t ask why), and the coverage of the Coons/O’Donnell debate was so infuriating I almost spit out my Heineken. OMGGGGG
I cannot wait to spank these pukes come November.

blatantblue on October 14, 2010 at 6:45 PM

Just guessing but I bet 99.9% of those folks looking for any signs of racism are the racists themselves.

fourdeucer on October 14, 2010 at 6:48 PM

I almost spit out my Heineken.

blatantblue on October 14, 2010 at 6:45 PM

Well there you go. If it had been an American-made beer, you wouldn’t have felt the urge.

John the Libertarian on October 14, 2010 at 6:49 PM

…. around the time Obama’s reelection campaign gets going in earnest.

I didn’t realize it had ever ended.

txag92 on October 14, 2010 at 6:49 PM

Chimpy mcHaliburton.

Why is that ok and, oh, anything anti-obama not?

WitchDoctor on October 14, 2010 at 6:50 PM

Fat, ponytailed blogger hardest hit.

JammieWearingFool on October 14, 2010 at 6:50 PM

Well there you go. If it had been an American-made beer, you wouldn’t have felt the urge.

John the Libertarian on October 14, 2010 at 6:49 PM

I prefer a microbrew anytime, but its in the fridge!

blatantblue on October 14, 2010 at 6:50 PM

Olbermann: “Howard Fineman/Jonathan Alter/Eugene Robinson, Sure, there was no overt racism in these signs but lots of dog whistle messages there. Correct me if I’m wrong.”

SteveMG on October 14, 2010 at 6:51 PM

Surprise! Surprise! The MSM was smearing people just for opposing Democratic Party policies. Who’d have thought that of our vaunted ‘independent’ press. You don’t suppose it’s the same people who avoided digging into Barry’s past when he ran for president, do you?

GarandFan on October 14, 2010 at 6:56 PM

“Well….no sh!t…” – Gunnery Sergeant Hartman

catmman on October 14, 2010 at 6:57 PM

Olbermann: “Howard Fineman/Jonathan Alter/Eugene Robinson, Sure, there was no overt racism in these signs but lots of dog whistle messages there. Correct me if I’m wrong.”

SteveMG on October 14, 2010 at 6:51 PM

or subliminal messages, as Olby would put it :-)….

jimver on October 14, 2010 at 6:58 PM

Well, obviously, isn’t it plain as day, Ekins and his crew didn’t visit ALL the Tea party rallies, so there just had to be a ton of racist signs and even these were quickly covered up when the attendees found out they were being studied, so the initial preordained conclusion of the Dems just has to be correct, that even though the Tea Party events I’ve attended in this area included Blacks, Hispanics, Asians and the regular old white guys and their families, the Tea Party is racist and DHS simply has to shut all of them down, pronto.

Right? /

At some point the Left and the current Administration and Congress is going to have to face that fact that there is indeed a huge swell of disgust among Americans of all stripes and colors, and this harping on the Tea Party as racist is nothing less than targeting, ridiculing and demonizing American citizens exercising their Right to assemble and demand redress from Government.

And when Americans are ridiculed for exercising their Constitutional Rights, well, we don’t take it very well.

19 days until we strike our first major blow against the crimes and excesses coming out of Washington when we hit the ballot box. Then, on to 2012.

coldwarrior on October 14, 2010 at 7:02 PM

blatantblue,
spitting out Heineken is more offensive then the idiot left wing meme about tea party racism. And yes HomeBrew is great, I have a couple gallons in the basement left from last time brewed.

rob verdi on October 14, 2010 at 7:05 PM

We are gonna do some house cleaning and boy is it gonna feel good!

Allahs vulva on October 14, 2010 at 7:08 PM

More racist signs at your average liberal march. Just go to zombietime.

lorien1973 on October 14, 2010 at 7:09 PM

Um. How are those examples racist? Birthery, perhaps, but birthers aren’t innately racist. Were the “somewhere in Texas a village is missing their idiot” signs prejudice against Southerners?

RachDubya on October 14, 2010 at 7:12 PM

I prefer a microbrew anytime, but its in the fridge!
blatantblue on October 14, 2010 at 6:50 PM

The Heinouskin just walked in while you were sleeping and jumped in the fridge?

As for the signs at the TP rallys, I have it on good authority that many many attendees had signs which used PBHO’s full name, Barack Hussein Obama. Using his middle name is racist according to credible libs and John McCain.

Bishop on October 14, 2010 at 7:16 PM

The Heinouskin just walked in while you were sleeping and jumped in the fridge?

1) LOL friend brought it over and that’s what’s here right now. I’ll get myself some local LI brews soon enough.

2) This name:

Allahs vulva on October 14, 2010 at 7:08 PM

Is Teh Win

blatantblue on October 14, 2010 at 7:22 PM

Fat, ponytailed blogger hardest hit.

JammieWearingFool on October 14, 2010 at 6:50 PM

Here comes the Johnson ban hammer!!!!!

Baxter Greene on October 14, 2010 at 7:25 PM

Just left a Tea Party in downtown Greensboro,NC…..

…………..did not see one burning cross….

………………Just lots of people who want to get back to governing in accordance with our founding fathers and the Constitution.

Baxter Greene on October 14, 2010 at 7:28 PM

LOL friend brought it over and that’s what’s here right now. I’ll get myself some local LI brews soon enough.

Any “friend” of mine who walked in the door with Heinouskin would be thrown right back out holding his beer in one arm and his head in the other. What sort of friends do you have?

Bishop on October 14, 2010 at 7:29 PM

Fat, ponytailed blogger hardest hit.
JammieWearingFool on October 14, 2010 at 6:50 PM
Here comes the Johnson ban hammer!!!!!
Baxter Greene on October 14, 2010 at 7:25 PM

Too late.

4k78 on October 14, 2010 at 7:30 PM

Bishop on October 14, 2010 at 7:29 PM

you abuse me yet i love it

blatantblue on October 14, 2010 at 7:31 PM

Fat, ponytailed blogger hardest hit.

JammieWearingFool on October 14, 2010 at 6:50 PM

I’m a Volunteer Deputy LGF Sheriff and I’m issuing you a Charles Johnson Demerit of Dishonor!

blatantblue on October 14, 2010 at 7:32 PM

Gee, I thought we were past the “Tea Partiers are racists” meme and into the “Tea Partiers are agents of foreign paymasters” meme. It’s so hard to keep up.

Cicero43 on October 14, 2010 at 7:47 PM

Charles Johnson hardest hit.

Urban Infidel on October 14, 2010 at 7:48 PM

I’m a Volunteer Deputy LGF Sheriff and I’m issuing you a Charles Johnson Demerit of Dishonor!

blatantblue on October 14, 2010 at 7:32 PM

…oh sh!t…the heat is on:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9efgLHgsBmM

Baxter Greene on October 14, 2010 at 7:49 PM

Johnson and Kilgore Trout have no comment now. That bitter old failed guitar player will just have to comfort himself by riding his seatless bicycle and dreaming about his lost relevance.

john1schn on October 14, 2010 at 8:12 PM

Study: Actually, there aren’t many racist signs at tea-party rallies after all

Jeez, Allah, what’s the point? Are you issuing a Leftist photoshopping challenge?

Dr. Charles G. Waugh on October 14, 2010 at 8:13 PM

OLD NEWS, COVERED MONTHS AGO.

Mutnodjmet on October 14, 2010 at 9:47 PM

No worries, though: It’ll be back next year, right around the time Obama’s reelection campaign gets going in earnest. Enjoy this respite while it lasts.

With the way things are going, I fear the people aren’t going to be carrying signs, but pitchforks!

One of these PIYPS things is that the one-year increase in the national debt, thanks to the unbelievable fiscal insanity of the deficit-spending Obama administration and the corrupt and moronic Congress, which is not to mention the monstrous monetary insanity of the loathsome Federal Reserve creating so much new money for them to borrow that inflation in prices will destroy us all.

Rae on October 14, 2010 at 10:20 PM