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Is Southern Poverty Law Center “Extremist”?

Is Southern Poverty Law Center “Extremist”?

Uses “Extremist” lists for political purposes.

On Friday, February 6, 2015, we broke the story that Dr. Ben Carson put on “Extremist” Watch List by Southern Poverty Law Center because of his position on and comments he has made about same sex marriage. (See link for details and videos)

The revelation that the renowned pediatric neurosurgeon and likely presidential candidate was on a list with Neo-Nazis infuriated many people.  

The story gained traction over the weekend, spreading far and wide in the blogosphere and into the mainstream media, including Daily Caller, Daily Mail, Washington Times, Mediaite, American Thinker, and many others.  Many, but not all, credited us with the story.

The Family Research Council understandably also picked up the story.  FRC was attacked by gunman Floyd Lee Corkins II because it was on the SPLC Extremist list, resulting in the shooting of a security guard.

I won’t repeat the long history of SPLC playing politics with its Hate Map and Extremist Lists — turning a potentially laudable alert about dangerous groups into a political mechanism.  SPLC even listed Rand Paul on a different list of Electoral Extremism.

Scroll through our SPLC tag for dozens of stories we have written over the years.

As someone who contributed to SPLC for many years, I’m disgusted with what it has become.

If Ben Carson and Rand Paul are “Extremists,” what about SPLC? As far as we know, neither Carson nor Paul have inspired violence the way SPLC has through its “Extremist” lists.

So is SPLC an Extremist Group? Or a hate group?

Ken Blackwell was on the O’Reilly last night talking about that issue:


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SPLC is a Democratic party run hate group.

Does the Pope sh*t in the woods?

Ben Carson and the family behind Chick-fil-A support “traditional marriage” or MARRIAGE as I call it. So far as I known, these are religious tenets they subscribe to

These are “extremist” positions?

Just short years ago these were the positions of Ball-less Bill Clintion, Ol’ Walleyes Clinton, and Barrachah Hussain Obama. I think his wife, MoooOOOoochelle, also held these same views.

Along with almost all of America, according to actual votes.

    theduchessofkitty in reply to Ragspierre. | February 11, 2015 at 9:34 am

    Dr. Carson is a Seventh-Day Adventist. The Cathys of Chick-fil-A are Southern Baptists. Some doctrinal differences aside, they have a lot in common.

    The SPLC doesn’t even care. If you don’t agree with them, you’re a “hater”. For an organization that aims to combat “hate”, they sure are haters themselves.

    Hey, might as well put all GOP Presidential candidates in the “Extremist” list and get it over with! After all, HATE is what the Robespierres at the SPLC are all about.

Since I won’t give them the traffic, does this money-grubbing pack of thought police list Rev. Sharpton or Jackson as “extremists”?

Of COURSE the Southern Poverty Law Center is an extremist group. If they had any shame or self-awareness, they would have listed themselves on their own “Hate List” years ago. They meet all of their own criteria for a listing.

It’s nice to see that the general public is finally catching up to what many of us have know for years or decades (plural): that the SPLC is a farce.

That the leadership SPLC took what was once a reasonable (but somewhat misguided) liberal organization dedicated to desegregation in the early 70s and converted it into a partisan attack machine dedicated to advancing Marxist causes and destroying Conservative and religious causes. Through public disparagement, slander and libel, bankrupting lawsuits based on “civil rights” which they largely created out of whole cloth and threats to corporations and individuals, they have inserted themselves into the political sphere, attempting to influence culture, rather than simply fight discrimination.

They have CHOSEN the topics that they fight on for the express purpose that they know if they can win, it WILL destabilize culture, leading to a form of anarchy, which they (through their neo-liberal Marxist allies) can then offer to “control” through governmental intervention, further leading to their influence gaining cultural ground.

    NC Mountain Girl in reply to Chuck Skinner. | February 11, 2015 at 11:58 am

    The SPLC was never respectable nor did it every have good if misguided intentions. It was founded by a direct marketing expert for the purpose of separating liberal fools from their money. The SPLC’s fundraising deceptions are legendary. Morris Dees’ former law partner once called him the James Bakker of Civil Rights activists. only to add that might be unfair to Bakker.

    The only shifting the SPLC has done has been targeting gullible donors. It began with the mailing list of McGovern for President and for years fed the fantasies of aging northern liberals about the evils of a Klan that was already on life support. As those donors began to die off it needed a new group of people with more money than brains. So it shifted to feeding the fantasies of insular urban homosexuals about evangelical Christians.

Well he does go after babies with sharp tools. Sometimes he even cuts into their bodies. Not only that, he probably gives them drugs before he does this. Scary dude.

Organizations that outlive their original purpose will migrate to other purposes, and there is no way to tell where this migration will lead.

The March of Dimes originally sought to eradicate polio, and after success, repurposed to ‘birth defects’. NOW strayed from feminism to general support of leftism.

SPLC once had a purpose, but as institutional racism and racial violence became socially unacceptable in this country, it had to change targets, because the old targets became inactive.

If this country had a decent law of slander, that is, one that allows public figures to contest falsehoods, I would suggest that Dr. Carson sue SPLC for slander per se, thereby giving the SPLC the same fate as the Ku Klux Klan.

New York Times v. Sullivan is over-broad and is ripe for modification.

They got the name wrong. SPLC stands for “Statist Preposterous Liie Concocters”

Of course not. They’re the guys “fighting the good fight” against racism and discrimination (through shakedowns and profit for themselves, but we won’t discuss that). It does list “Nation of Islam” though, so that’s something.

However, I did note a friendly face I remember on the “extremist files” there: Kyle Bristow, my former Michigan State University alumnus and colleague, former chair of MSU’s Young American’s for Freedom club. I remember fondly 2007 when the SPLC listed it as a “hate group.”

I remember the furor over “Catch an Illegal Immigrant Day” and the support letter that was written (by me) from the Conservative Law Society to the President and Board of Michigan State University basically telling them that if they attempted to punish or expel Bristow over it that we, and our graduated legal colleagues in the Michigan Bar, would start making their lives very, very unpleasant.

Bristow cancelled the event, and MSU backed off, but it was a galvanizing event.

SPLC absolutely HATES Bristow, because he’s called them out publicly on their bullshit AND then he wrote a fiction book with them as one of the antagonists, where they get eviscerated in the fiction.

    Ragspierre in reply to Chuck Skinner. | February 11, 2015 at 11:07 am

    “…with them as one of the antagonists, where they get eviscerated in the fiction.”

    Which really, REALLY smarts, getting it in the ol’ fiction that-a-way…!!!

    But good on your bud. Alinsky they buttocks!

“Is Southern Poverty Law Center “Extremist”?”

Is water wet?

Selective exclusion or principled tolerance. SPLC needs to reorient their compass.

Maintaining a valid watch-list requires active impartiality, honesty, and constant introspection, just like journalism. This is a Herculean task that is almost never done well. Most organizations will simply stop trying if they can be partial and still pay the bills.