The KidsPost section of The Washington Post on June 28 features a lesson on how to manipulate the minds of children with liberal talking points on big issues. In an article entitled “Rallying in Support of Illegal Immigrants, Kids Say Families Could Be Separated” the issue of illegal immigrants was put into the scary context of kids being separated from their parents.
In the 11-paragraph story, filled with pictures of smiling girls, red, white and blue balloons and the American flag, there was not one mention of the fact that illegal immigrants in this country have broken the law. Rather the children who read the KidsPost were told that these people are “in the country without having permission from the U.S. government.”
Yeah, you read that right. Breaking the law is the equivalent of doing something "without permission." What normal, average kid is going to think that's a bad thing? Kinda' like sneaking a cookie out of the cookie jar when mom's not looking.
It is obvious that author Luz Lazo's purpose in this piece is to influence young minds. Every child quoted in the piece was supportive of the idea that illegal immigrants should be allowed to stay in the United States. One child, a U.S. citizen, was “afraid” her illegal immigrant parents will be deported. Another, who is an illegal immigrant, said she will be “sad” if she has to go back to live in Mexico and that she would “feel like a stranger there.” The story said she spoke in Spanish.
Even the friends chimed in. Two other children who are citizens support the scared kids. One said the “government should help these people.” The other said children shouldn’t have to pay for their parents mistakes, “It’s not their fault that their parents are not legal.” That 12-year old went on to say that, "People come to the United States to have better lives."
It isn't until a reader gets to the accompanying sidebar on the immigration legislation (just blocked by the Senate), that the words "broke the law" ever show up. But these come only after the reader has read "illegal immigrants are people from other countries who are in the United States without the permission of the U.S. government."
The bias in this piece borders on being insidious, especially because it is aimed squarely at children who clearly don't have a finely tuned "bias radar." First it paints the immigration issue solely in terms related to a kid's greatest fear, being separated from their parents. Second by only featuring sympathetic children, it plays to a child's natural instinct to align with peers and defend the underdog.
The concept of the KidsPost – getting kids interested in reading newspapers – is one I actually like. My own 12-year old asks to read the KidsPost every morning over breakfast. And then I spend the next several minutes de-programming the information she's consumed.
And that, in a nutshell, points to the subtle, sometimes transparent, efforts of the liberal media: hook 'em early and feed 'em one point of view.