‘Hate Group’ Masquerading As Advocate of Human Rights?

Frank Miele, Daily Inter Lake (Kalispell, Montana), March 7, 2010

A funny thing happened on the way to this week’s column–I got “targeted,” “frozen,” “personalized” and “polarized.”

In other words, I got lumped in with the majority of Americans as the “radical right”–you know, the scary people who believe in God, the Constitution, family values, and an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay.

“Targeting” the opposition is the tactic made famous by left-wing political theorist Saul Alinsky, who wrote in “Rules for Radicals,” that one key route to power is to “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” {snip}

That’s the methodology employed by the Southern Poverty Law Center, a so-called human-rights group, in a new report called “Rage on the Right,” which seeks to convince Americans that “the anger seething across the American political landscape” as represented by the Tea Party movement is “shot through with rich veins of radical ideas, conspiracy theories and racism.”

As an example of how “targeting” works, you have to realize that this SPLC report is allegedly a review of “The Year in Hate and Extremism,” but there is not one mention of Islamic extremism included–nothing about the alleged murder of 13 people at Fort Hood by Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan; nothing about the Muslim convert who apparently killed a soldier at a recruiting center in Little Rock, Ark.; nothing about the father who allegedly killed his daughter by ramming her with a car for being “too Westernized”; nothing about the founder of a Muslim TV station in Buffalo, N.Y., who was charged with beheading his wife for seeking a divorce; nothing about the murder of a college professor in New York state by his Muslim student, allegedly in revenge for “persecuted” Muslims.

{snip}

{snip} We all know that Americans are dangerous, especially when seeking to guarantee their constitutional rights. Among the “signs of growing radicalization” that SPLC spokesman Mark Potok notes in his “Rage on the Right” report is “Politicians pandering to the antigovernment right in 37 states [that] have introduced ‘Tenth Amendment resolutions,’ based on the constitutional provision keeping all power not explicitly given the the federal government with the states.”

Apparently, supporting the Constitution is now considered radical.

So too is quoting the Founding Fathers. As one sign of the growing “radicalization” that threatens America, we are told by Potok that armed men have attended speeches by President Obama “bearing signs suggesting that the ‘tree of liberty’ needs to be ‘watered’ with the ‘blood of tyrants.’ ” What Potok fails to mention is that the source of the quotation is Thomas Jefferson{snip}.

{snip}

This kind of “scare tactic” would be more alarming if it came from a source other than the Southern Poverty Law Center, but that group’s credibility has already long since vanished. Even a writer for the left-wing Huffington Post wrote a scathing rebuke of the SPLC for its lack of interest in the Obama administration’s decision to drop charges against members of the New Black Panther Party who had tried to intimidate voters in Philadelphia in 2008.

Carol M. Swain wrote last year that, “The SPLC has been mum on the issue, despite the fact that in 2000, it included the New Black Panther Party among its annual list of hate groups.”

{snip}

Nor is Swain a voice on the right who can be marginalized as yet another neo-Nazi racist by the Southern Poverty Law Center. She is a black woman who is a professor of political science and law at Vanderbilt University, and has written a book entitled “The New White Nationalism in America: Its Challenge to Integration.”

Yet from her vantage point as an expert on race relations, she has no trouble seeing through the polarizing tactics of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Her summation is the best final word:

“Rather than monitoring hate groups, the Southern Poverty Law Center has become one.”

[Mark Potok’s report “Rage on the Right” can be read here.]

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