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Claims AFA, Family Research Council among ‘hate’ groups
Bob Unruh, WorldNetDaily, June 11, 2017 – A “public charity” that purports to be “neutral” and provide online “nonprofit information to a broad audience at no cost to those users” has begun slamming Christian and other conservative organizations based on the recommendation of the Southern Poverty Law Center, which itself has been linked to domestic terror and once put Ben Carson on its list of “haters.”
For certain organizations, Guidestar has begun posting at the top of its reports a box with a logo and link to SPLC stating: “This organization was flagged as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.”
Among the organizations targeted by Guidestar are the American Family Association and the Family Research Council, both highly respected and prominent Christian organizations that SPLC considers “hate” groups because they support traditional marriage.
Other groups appear to be in the bull’s-eye because they don’t subscribe to an open-borders agenda.
AFA, whose mission statement is to promote the biblical ethic of decency in American society,” couldn’t be reached on Friday for comment.
FRC’s executive vice president, Lt. Gen (Ret.) William G. “Jerry” Boykin, told WND that Guidestar already had been informed of the problem.
“We have presented them with what we think are key points they need to consider … the key I think for them is they are taking data from an organization that was connected in federal court to domestic terrorism.”
He said the group is discriminating based on unconfirmed third-party information and “they have no legitimate authority to do [that].”
He said it’s nothing more than an “opinion” from SPLC, and that group “is an arm of the extreme left.”
“Now as a result of using their data, this so-called neutral organization has become a part of the political arm of the left,” he said.
The FRC previously has commented on the SPLC’s “hate” agenda.
“Logically, a ‘hate group’ should be defined as one whose members 1) actually say that they hate a particular group of people; and/or 2) engage in or condone violence or other illegal activity toward such a group,” the group previously explained.
FRC continued: “The SPLC, however, uses much broader criteria for defining ‘hate groups,’ and criteria which can vary depending on which of 14 categories of ‘hate groups’ you are looking at – ranging from ‘Neo-Nazi’ to ‘Black Separatist’ to ‘Radical Traditional Catholicism.’ These criteria are entirely subjective and largely ideological.”
FRC explained SPLC tars everyone with which it disagrees ideologically with the same label.
“The SPLC claims that the number of ‘hate groups in American increased by a staggering 66 percent from 2000 to 2010. Yet this is only as a result of their own expanding definition of what constitutes a ‘hate group.’ Actual hate crimes as measured by the FBI, fell nearly 25 percent between 1996 and 2009,” the group explained. “The SPLC’s Mark Potok has publicly confessed that there is ‘an element of hypocrisy’ in the SPLC attacking conservative groups while remaining silent about liberal groups that use ‘exactly the same kind of tactics.’”
The group continued: “A liberal writer in The Humanist said, ‘The SPLC campaigns for laws that will effectively deny free speech and freedom of association to certain groups of Americans on the basis of their beliefs. … Then, with no discernible irony, it goes on to justify its Big Brother methods in the name of tolerance.’”
Guidestar use of SPLC’s bias against Christianity to flag beneficial charities was revealed in an Associated Press report.
Michael Kunzelman wrote, “A website that touts itself as the world’s largest course of information about charities has added a new feature: a warning label on tax-exempt nonprofits accused of spreading hate.”
The report quoted GuideStar spokesman Jacob Harold saying the move reflects a “broader shift in how we imagine our role in the field.”
He said the move came as a response to the “recent rise in ‘hateful rhetoric’ in the U.S.,” AP said.
GuideStar declined multiple requests from WND for an interview.
A spokesman for the Center for Immigration Studies, which also was being targeted by Guidestar, told AP: “This is defamation. GuideStar is an accomplice to this defamation now.”
Harold told AP his group didn’t do any evaluation; it just repeats SPLC’s bias.
“We feel that’s quite defensible,” he told AP.
SPLC’s past targeting of FRC was cited in court as the impetus for an attack on the Christian organization’s Washington, D.C., headquarters.
The legal team at Liberty Counsel, criticizing SPLC for “falsely and recklessly labeling Christian ministries as ‘hate groups,’” noted SPLC is “responsible for the first conviction of a man who intended to commit mass murder targeted against a policy organization in Washington, D.C.”
“On August 15, 2012, Floyd Corkins went to the Family Research Council with a gun and a bag filled with ammunition and Chick-fil-A sandwiches. His stated purpose was to kill as many employees of the Family Research Council as possible and then to smear Chick-fil-A sandwiches in their faces (because the founder of the food chain said he believed in marriage as a man and a woman). Fortunately, Mr. Corkins was stopped by the security guard, who was shot in the process. Corkins is now serving time in prison. Mr. Corkins admitted to the court that he learned of the Family Research Council by reading the SPLC’s hate map.”
WND reported a video showed Corkins entering the FRC offices and confronting Leo Johnson.
Corkins later was sentenced to prison for domestic terrorism. It was during an interview with FBI officers that Corkins named SPLC as his source of information.
Central to the case, according to the government’s document, was that Corkins “had identified the FRC as an anti-gay organization on the Southern Poverty Law Center website.”
FRC officials repeatedly have explained that they adhere to a biblical perspective on homosexuality but are not “anti-gay.”
SPLC also exhibited behavior so egregious that it was reprimanded by the far-left administration of Barack Obama.
“[It] involves the SPLC’s atrocious behavior during immigration court proceedings. Two groups that oppose illegal immigration, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) and the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI), were the target of personal, baseless and below-the-belt attacks from SPLC attorneys during official immigration court proceedings. The SPLC filed a motion attacking and defaming the two respected nonprofits by describing them as ‘white supremacist,’ ‘eugenicist,’ ‘anti-Semitic,’ and ‘anti-Catholic.’ In its reprimand the DOJ says it is troubled by the conduct of SPLC lawyer Christopher Strawn and that his conduct ‘overstepped the bounds of zealous advocacy and was unprofessional.’ Furthermore, SPLC made ‘uncivil comments that disparaged FAIR and its staff,’ the rebuke states, adding that the language constitutes frivolous behavior and doesn’t aid in the administration of justice,” Judicial Watch explained.
“The Obama administration kept the reprimand confidential and asked FAIR and IRLI to keep it under wraps. In the meantime, SPLC continues to publicly trash the groups and escalate attacks against them by putting them on the official hate list. The executive director and general counsel of IRLI, Dale Wilcox, says his nonprofit and FAIR will keep fighting for immigration policies that put America first. ‘The SPLC’s latest tactic in its never-ending witch-hunt and the federal government’s resulting reprimand should send the following message to the mainstream media,’ Wilcox said: ‘Stop using the SPLC as a legitimate hate-watch source in your news coverage. That a cabal of biased list-keepers can play such an important role in distorting the immigration debate in this country is testament to the utter failure of much of the mainstream media which frequently publishes their inflammatory commentary and refuses to question their baseless methods or financial motivations,’” Judicial Watch said.
The letter explained the DOJ stopped short of “formal disciplinary proceeding[s],” instead opting for the rebuke in the letter.
“We take this opportunity to remind the attorney practitioners involved in this misconduct that practitioners before EOIR should be striving to be civil and professional in their interactions with each other, the public, the board and immigration courts. Attorneys owe a duty of professionalism to their clients, opposing parties and their counsel, the courts, and the public as a whole.”
SPLC recently was listed among the top 10 enemies that have attacked WND over the years. WND and WND Books were put on SPLC’s latest list of “extremists.”
Further, SPLC’s definition of “haters” and “extremists” has been at variance with the mainstream. The organization, for example, labeled Ben Carson, now President Trump’s HUD secretary, an “extremist.” After a nationwide backlash last year, the organization apologized and removed the post.
But the SPLC website still has a negative “file” on Carson that insists he has said things that “most people would conclude are extreme,” such as his belief that marriage is the union of one man and one woman.