The SPLC Seeks to Profit From Alleged ‘Hate’
Are parents who are concerned for their children’s education “haters”? Are they bigots? Do they deserve to be treated as “domestic terrorists”? The answer to all of these questions should be, “No.”
But lately, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a group that claims to be the last word in who are haters and hate groups in America, has now added Moms for Liberty to their infamous “map of hate.”
This means, according to the SPLC, that right up there — or really, right down there — with the skinheads and the Ku Klux Klan is this grassroots organization of mothers concerned about their children’s education.
The website of Moms for Liberty explains why they exist: “The organization’s mission is to organize, educate and empower parents to defend their parental rights at all levels of government.”
Demonizing People Who Disagree
Tyler O’Neil of the Heritage Foundation wrote the book on the SPLC. It’s called Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center.
I’ve had the privilege to interview O’Neil about the infamous work of the SPLC. He told me, “The Southern Poverty Law Center is a morally bankrupt organization with upwards of $700 million endowment. And they make their money by demonizing people who disagree with them.”
Just last week, O’Neil wrote, “The SPLC, which has weaponized the program it used against the KKK in the 1980s to attack mainstream conservative and Christian organizations, in June added parental rights groups to its so-called hate map, among them Moms for Liberty, Parents Defending Education, Purple for Parents, and Courage Is a Habit.”
This is scary. America is in the midst of a crisis of education, and a crying need for more parental involvement in their children’s education. But according to the SPLC, if they are parents with a conservative point of view, then they’re bigots.
Promoting Irreligion and Immorality
For the American experiment in self-rule under God to work, said virtually every founding father, the people themselves have to be virtuous.
George Washington, whose birthday we celebrate soon, said famously, “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports.”
But today’s elites seem committed to promoting irreligion and immorality. And if you oppose any of these things, you might just find yourself labeled as a hater or a hate group.
That may seem preposterous, but my employer, Coral Ridge Ministries (also known as D. James Kennedy Ministries) has been labeled as a hate group by the SPLC. And we can be found on their “hate and antigovernment groups” map. Why? Because we disagree with same-sex marriage. We sued them for libel, but they basically said they were practicing their First Amendment right of free speech. When they appear in the media, they appear as Arbiters of Hate. But when it came time to defend their hate designation in court, they meekly stated that it was simply a matter of opinion. Our appeals all the way up to the Supreme Court failed.
Driven by Profit
There was a time when the SPLC did some good work to try and curtail racism in America. But in the last few decades or so, they seem to spend all their considerable resources trying to vilify conservatives and Christians.
The Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court Tom Parker once told our viewers in a television interview that the SPLC is basically a gigantic fundraising machine: “They have been able to squirrel away overseas while they continued to purport to represent those in poverty and in need.”
Parker made an interesting suggestion when we were making a documentary on the SPLC. He said we should take our TV crew and go across town, to the other side of the tracks, and get some footage of some of those still experiencing Southern poverty that the Southern Poverty Law Center doesn’t lift a finger to help. We followed up on the Chief Justice’s idea.
“Woe to Those Who Call Evil Good and Good Evil”
All of this makes one wonder: Who died and put the SPLC in charge of determining who hates and who does not?
Many of the groups that the SPLC now targets as alleged hate groups are perhaps being so labeled because they are effective in making a positive difference, like the Alliance Defending Freedom (which has won a number of significant cases at the Supreme Court), Liberty Counsel, the Family Research Council, and a host of other conservative Christian groups that defend religious liberty and traditional marriage.
The SPLC sets themselves up as prophets. But judging by the endowment they’ve built up by scaring northeastern liberals who don’t know any Christians, it seems that perhaps they’re more driven by profits.
The words of the ancient Hebrew prophet Isaiah come to mind. He said, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness.”
Jerry Newcombe, D.Min., is the executive director of the Providence Forum, an outreach of D. James Kennedy Ministries, where Jerry also serves as senior producer and an on-air contributor. He has written/co-written 33 books, including George Washington’s Sacred Fire (with Providence Forum founder Peter Lillback, Ph.D.) and What If Jesus Had Never Been Born? (with D. James Kennedy, Ph.D.)