The fall of the Southern Poverty Law Center

Matthew Hoy
By Matthew Hoy on December 7, 2016
The Southern Poverty Law Center is no longer a non-partisan civil rights organization.
The Southern Poverty Law Center is no longer a non-partisan civil rights organization.

Before I was born, the Southern Poverty Law Center was, along with the NAACP, a bastion of the civil rights movement. The organization has spent decades fighting racism, segregation and bigotry.

That period of the group's history is no more. The SPLC has moved on from its noble beginnings to a new era where it is nothing more than another left wing propaganda group creating various bogeymen on a regular basis in order to increase its fundraising haul.

In recent years, the SPLC has added groups that sought to maintain the millennia-old definition that marriage was an institution consisting of one man and one woman to its hate-watch lists. While they find it easy to add groups like the Family Research Council and the National Organization for Marriage to their lists, they neglect to add many mainstream Christian organizations that hold the same views—the Catholic Church, the vast majority of Christian denominations, all Muslim groups and mosques—to their lists.

That would give away the game.

The reason I bring this up is that the local paper, the San Luis Obispo Tribune, has cited the SPLC as one of those groups you should consult when identifying "hate speech."

Once upon a time I would've agreed, but no more.

In fact, just days after the local paper cited the SPLC as a go-to source, the New York Post reported that the group's recent non-scientific report on "The Trump Effect: The Impact of the 2016 Presidential Election on Our Nation's Schools" failed to report that about 20 percent of respondents reported anti-white slurs.

But the SPLC didn’t present the whole story. The Montgomery, Ala.-based nonprofit self-censored results from a key question it asked educators — whether they agree or disagree with the following statement: “I have heard derogatory language or slurs about white students.”

Asked last week to provide the data, SPLC initially said it was having a hard time getting the information “from the researchers.” Pressed, SPLC spokeswoman Kirsten Bokenkamp finally revealed that “about 20 percent answered affirmatively to that question.”

Bokenkamp did not provide an explanation for the absence of such a substantial metric — at least 2,000 bias-related incidents against white students — from the report, which focuses instead on “anti-immigrant sentiment,” “anti-Muslim sentiment” and “slurs about students of color” related to the election.

Anyone with half a brain and an understanding of what the SPLC has turned into knows the answer to that. It's an answer that affects a lot of the community of narrative journalists as well.

Anti-white slurs and "bias incidents" don't fit the narrative that the 2016 election was a "white"-wash and a result of a rising tide of neo-nazism, KKK, and white bigotry across the nation as a whole.

The SPLC also released data on self-reported hate crimes that it made no effort to check. I've no doubt that a not insubstantial number of those reports will also turn out to be fabricated.

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