Anti-immigrant poster spurs reaction from South Bay students

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (KGO) -- An anti-immigrant poster that appeared at two locations on the Santa Clara University campus earlier this week has prompted students to challenge what they considered hate speech. "There is a fine line between hate speech and free speech," says junior Areli Hernandez, "but this clearly hated speech."

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The unauthorized poster quickly came down, but it was just as quickly replaced by a large banner with an opposing viewpoint in the on-going debate over immigration reform. It, too, was taken down because it was unauthorized.

However, it has found a new home, hanging outside the multicultural center next to the student dining hall, which is considered a free speech zone. Posters also line a staircase railing at the dining hall with sayings, such as "No human being is illegal," "We will not be silenced," and "We are here to stay."

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"Dialogue is very important," says sophomore Diana Servin. 'We need to learn how to voice our opinions in a respectful manner where we can still get our point across, but still allow us to grow and to really learn from each other."

Dialogue is what the university administration sees as constructive.

In a statement, its provost said, "Although various individuals on campus have occasionally chosen to express their views in ways that are disrespectful, hostile, or intentionally hurtful, I remain hopeful that... every one of us will commit to hold ourselves to higher standards of behavior in our dialogue with one another."

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