PJ Media, by Robert Spencer, Aug. 16, 2017:
Charlottesville was a huge victory for the hard-Left Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). And that’s not good for anyone who loves freedom.
The driver of the car who plowed into a crowd of Leftist demonstrators in Charlottesville Saturday was a neo-Nazi, and on Monday President Trump denounced the Ku Klux Klan, “neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups,” which he rightly said were “repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”
Leftist media outlets are making all they can out of this opportunity to stigmatize and marginalize definitively all “hate groups,” using the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) list of such groups. There’s just one problem: the SPLC’s “hate group” list is an irresponsible and libelous mélange of real hate groups with organizations that simply oppose the SPLC’s hard-Left agenda.
The mainstream media has for years conferred an aura of legitimacy on the SPLC, treating this cynical gang of profiteers as if it were a neutral and reliable arbiter of what constitutes a “hate group” and what does not. Charlotte Allen wrote in The Weekly Standard last March:
It’s hard to say what’s worse: the outrageousness of the Southern Poverty Law Center in pinning the label “white nationalist” and “extremist” on anyone who bucks the prevailing politically correct narrative, or the credulity of the mainstream media in treating the SPLC as a neutral source.
Yet CNN did it again Monday in a story about how GoDaddy had revoked the account of a site called Daily Stormer in the wake of Charlottesville:
According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, “the Daily Stormer is dedicated to spreading anti-Semitism, neo-Nazism, and white nationalism, primarily through guttural hyperbole and epithet-laden stories about topics like alleged Jewish world control and black-on-white crime.” The SPLC, which tracks hate groups, says the unapologetic hatred on the Daily Stormer — which also takes aim at African-Americans and opponents of President Donald Trump, for example — is a catalyst for division.
Meanwhile, the Huffington Post reminded us:
There are 917 hate groups currently operating across the U.S., according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.
And that’s where the SPLC’s hate group listing becomes insidious. If, post-Charlottesville, the establishment media and the Left are going to embark upon a full-scale jihad (I wouldn’t want to offend Leftists by calling it a “crusade”) against neo-Nazis and white supremacists, they’re going to catch in their net a great many legitimate groups if they rely on the SPLC to direct them to the “hate groups.”
Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) wrote in the Washington Post in March:
Since 2007, the Southern Poverty Law Center has methodically added mainstream organizations critical of current immigration policy to its blacklist of “hate groups,” including the Federation for American Immigration Reform, the Immigration Reform Law Institute and Californians for Population Stabilization, among others. In February, my own organization, the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), got its turn.
The wickedness of the SPLC’s blacklist lies in the fact that it conflates groups that really do preach hatred, such as the Ku Klux Klan and Nation of Islam, with ones that simply do not share the SPLC’s political preferences. The obvious goal is to marginalize the organizations in this second category by bullying reporters into avoiding them, scaring away writers and researchers from working for them, and limiting invitations for them to discuss their work.
Indeed. That is certainly the objective behind this hard-Left moneymaking and incitement machine’s latest dossier on “Islamophobes,” which says:
Before you book a spokesperson from an anti-Muslim extremist group or quote them in a story, research their background — detailed in this in-depth guide to 15 of the most visible anti-Muslim activists — and consider the consequences of giving them a platform.
They wish to silence those who speak honestly about the nature and magnitude of the jihad threat, blaming us for a supposed rise in “Islamophobia.” If they really want to stamp out suspicion of Islam, of course, they will move against not us, but the likes of Omar Mateen, Syed Rizwan Farook, Tashfeen Malik, Nidal Malik Hasan, Mohammed Abdulazeez, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, and the myriad other Muslims who commit violence in the name of Islam and justify it by reference to Islamic teachings.
The SPLC doesn’t do that because its objective is not really to stop “Islamophobia” at all, but to create the illusion of a powerful and moneyed network of “Islamophobes” whom can only be stopped if you write a check to the SPLC. That’s what this is really all about.
In constructing this illusory edifice, the SPLC labeled me and fourteen others “anti-Muslim extremists.”
We are, of course, no more “anti-Muslim” than foes of the Nazis were anti-German, but note the word “extremists.” In what way are we “extremists”? Has anyone on the SPLC’s hit list (and given the SPLC’s track record of inciting violence against its targets, that is exactly what it is) ever blown anything or anyone up? Beheaded anyone? Boasted of our imminent conquest of any territory and the massacre of or enslavement of its people?
No, all we have done is speak critically about jihad terror and Sharia oppression. The SPLC is trying to further the libel that we are the other side of the coin, the non-Muslim bin Ladens and Awlakis. Until we commit any terror attacks or conspire with others to do so, however, the SPLC’s libel is only that: a libel.
And in the post-Charlottesville hysteria, it’s a dangerous one.
As the Left calls for a clampdown on “hate groups” and uses the SPLC to buttress its claims, it is working actively toward bringing about a situation in which only hard-Left voices can be heard in the public square. We’re already well on the way.