Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Hate Group MassResistance is Very Very Angry with SPLC

Brian Camenker
Hate group leader Brian Camenker
The the shelves of the nut aisle at the hate emporium are well stocked with various odd personae. Overwhelmingly they are conservative Christians, unhinged, incurious and possessed of a mediocre intellect. Brian Camenker, the leader of the hate group MassResistance (MR), is a bit unique. In all respects Camenker fits the bill but he is Jewish. Every now and then we run across crackpot Hasidim but for the most part we Jews aren't terribly concerned with what other people do. Moreover, 6,000 of oppression have taught us a thing or two about being a minority.

Last Friday, MassResistance posted a piece to their blog titled: “Wealthy Anti-Christian hate group – Southern Poverty Law Center – targeting MassResistance chapters.” The post lacks attribution to an author. According to the subtitle"
Working to intimidate and silence parents and citizens
Also targeting hundreds of pro-family groups nationwide
Despicable tactics widely condemned across America
The fact that SPLC is on a solid financial footing is irrelevant to what amounts to a claim of bias. The organization was founded by a Christian (Morris Dees) so that doesn't seem to fit either. An SPLC image is captioned: “The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) uses psychological methods to portray pro-family, Christian, and conservative groups as dangerous to society and labels hundreds of them as 'hate groups.'”

Ask any Klansman and they will proudly tell you that they are a pro-family conservative Christian organization. That is usually followed with some version of “we are misunderstood.” In other words, MR's description is meaningless. More importantly it does not constitute the basis for a listing as a hate group by SPLC. That award goes to groups that engage in distortion or misinformation about an adversary — normally a member of a minority. In this case that would apply to LGBT people. Those so designated are given every opportunity to correct the record and to emerge from that status.

MassResistance is long on accusations and very short on substance. The writer continues:
The virulently anti-Christian Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a well-funded left-wing extremist group based in Montgomery, Alabama, has begun targeting our MassResistance chapters, particularly our chapters in California, Texas, and Missouri. It has started pushing its demonization and disinformation to local liberal activists and media outlets.
SPLC is certainly not anti-Christian. They have designated fewer than 1,000 organizations as hate groups. I maintain a database consisting of the IRS BMF. There are nearly 33,000 non-profit groups with names that contain either Christian or Catholic. That doesn't include organizations like Family Research Council or American Family Association. Even if we limit our observation to those  33,000 entities, those 1,000 hate groups constitute about 3% and not all of them are Christian organizations. Furthermore those operations are not designated  hate groups for being conservative Christian. They are designated hate groups for their persistent bigotry.

The author doesn't tell us what constitutes “targeting.” It's only targeting if the information provided by SPLC is inaccurate. The author is not specific about those inaccuracies. Nor does the author make any attempt to explain what SPLC has done wrong.

What then follow is 1,992 words of argument ad hominem, still without answering the basic question of how SPLC is treating MassResistance unfairly or dishonestly. 1,992 words without substance seem to confirm that MassResistance is unable to document inaccuracy or unfairness. For example (and I won't go through the entire diatribe):
The SPLC freely admits that the “hate group” designation is not for anything that pro-family, conservative, or Christian groups actually do, but the fact that their beliefs are at odds with Leftist doctrine. For example, if a group believes that homosexuality causes diseases and a shorter lifespan on average, it is a hate group – despite overwhelming medical evidence supporting that position.
No cite. Of course there is no cite because the SPLC admits no such thing. A hate group designation is based entirely on actions. Indeed they provide one of their favorite actions which is that homosexuality causes disease. HIV does not discriminate. It is unprotected sex that spreads disease.

We all know that gays are disproportionately victims of HIV infection because the virus was introduced into the United States through gay men. Such is not the case in sub-Saharan Africa where it is a heterosexual disease. And just what is the point? Are people not supposed to be gay? Flip a swtch located behind one's left ear? HIV is used as an anti-gay argument as a means of denigrating gay people. It has no practical purpose beyond opprobrium.

Furthermore, it is intentional misleading to claim that there is irrefutable medical evidence that being gay is deadly. There they cite their own brochure. MassResistance's intended inference is that people should not be gay because they become diseased. It presupposes that sexual orientation is a choice; something that is contradicted by mountains of peer-reviewed research published to respected scholarly journals. I think that I wrote earlier about intentional misrepresentations.

Finally, on this subject, the kind of bigotry that MassResistance and other hate groups spread contributes to the spread of HIV. The reason is simple. People in conservative communities are less likely to be tested for fear of becoming outcasts in their communities.

Let's change the subject:
SPLC “hate list” linked to attempted murders

Not surprisingly, the SPLC’s aggressive hatred of Christian groups has led to at least one bloody scene of attempted murder. On Aug. 15, 2012, Floyd Lee Corkins walked into the lobby of Family Research Council …
I can do this better than they can:

Christianity linked to murders

On May 31, 2009, Dr. George Tiller was fatally shot in the side of the head by Scott Roeder …

The simple fact is that SPLC has never advocated violence. Actually, quite the contrary. How Corkins chose Family Research Council is no more relevant than if he picked from the yellow pages. Family Research Council is listed as a hate group. FRC has the power to change that designation at any time. By the way, just for comparison, Dr. Tiller was targeted by groups that do advocate violence with expectation that someone would kill or seriously injure him.

Moving along:
Since 2005 there have been numerous attacks on churches and gatherings of conservatives by organized LGBT activists. In 2008 homosexual groups in California staged a campaign of terror and violence against Christians who supported Prop 8. Yet none of those homosexual groups have been deemed a “hate” group by the SPLC -- though they clearly should be.
Oh, please. There was never a “campaign of terror and violence” against anyone. Who was injured? What specifically did a specific LGBT advocacy group do that would warrant being designated a hate group? This is just innuendo in contrast to specifics.

Just a few more:
But inflaming liberal activists against conservatives is actually a secondary purpose of the SPLC. Its primary purpose is to raise extraordinary amounts of money from gullible liberals using these scare tactics. Over the years, the SPLC has built a war chest of nearly $300 million, according to reports, and spends relatively little of it on any legitimate “non-profit” activity -- besides more fundraising.
None of that has anything whatsoever to do with actions on the part of SPLC designating organizations as hate groups. Nevertheless, SPLC is on a solid financial foundation because it does good work. SPLC raises about $40 million per year and it has a healthy endowment (which constitutes the bulk of its assets). In 2015, SPLC was cash positive by about $9 million. It might be a valid argument to suggest that SPLC could spend more. However, in 2015 they increased their budget by about $3 million over the prior year on relatively comparable revenues.

The bottom line is that being financially secure and fiscally prudent has no bearing on the integrity of the organization or its activities. The balance of MR's argument is someone's vivid imagination and probably an inability to read annual reports and financial statements. In 2015 program services expenses (all of which were in support of legitimate non-profit activities) were $30 million. Offsetting revenues were $300 thousand. Contributions make up the difference.
The SPLC’s most popular dehumanizing tactic against Christian and conservative groups is reminiscent of how Joseph Goebbels, the Third Reich’s Minister of Propaganda during the 1930’s, worked to dehumanize Jews. Goebbels would produce movie clips showing groups of Jews, then interspersing them with rats and other vermin, to give the psychological message that they were all part of the same dirt polluting society.
Shame on Mr. Camenker. No self-respecting Jew makes gratuitous comparisons to the Nazis. I will avoid the obvious myself.
The SPLC employs a similar strategy using series of “hate maps” for each state, placing Christian and conservative groups interspersed with neo-Nazi and KKK groups alongside them. They also use a lot of Nazi and KKK imagery on their website. It also lists pro-family organizations and individual leaders among neo-Nazi and Aryan-nation groups and leaders. The purpose is to send the psychological message that they are all equally vile.
That is just nonsense. Unless MassResistance can point to specific examples of factually inaccurate information propagated by SPLC this is all just irresponsible gibberish. By the way “they are all equally vile.” I find little difference between hate for Jews by neo-Nazis and hate for gays by frenzied homophobic zealots. Both breed violence and oppression.

I am skipping over a great deal of material somewhat haphazardly:
The SPLC’s twisted “tolerance” agenda has also found its way into police departments across America – and even the FBI. This successfully fueled the institutional suspicion and even loathing of conservative, Christian, and Tea Party groups by law enforcement agencies in recent years, while liberal and LGBT groups – even Black Lives Matter or left-wing terror groups in Berkeley -- are accepted and even welcomed.
So now law enforcement is part of conspiracy to punish conservative Christians. What does any of this have to do with MassResistance's claim of being unfairly “targeted?” How and by whom? We are almost finished with this and I still do not know what their complaint is beyond the hysteria of anti-LGBT lunatics.
Notably, in 2014, the FBI cut its ties with the SPLC after public outcry over its phony “research,” and when it became obvious that the SPLC’s claims about the rise of “hate” groups in America were vastly inconsistent with the FBI’s own findings. However, at some point after that the Obama Justice Department apparently forced the FBI to bring the SPLC back in, and so far the Trump Administration has not stepped in to fix that.
MR cites Breitbart. Sure. To the best of my knowledge none of that is true. The FBI has had a long and uninterrupted relationship with law enforcement at the local and federal levels. The relationship is built on trust and integrity.
Over the last few years, the SPLC has used its enormous bankroll to fund lawsuits against Christian and Jewish groups and individuals that are effective or whom the SPLC wants to make a strategic “example” of. For example, last year, the SPLC used the courts to shut down the counseling service JONAH, a Jewish group helping people who wanted to leave the homosexual lifestyle. SPLC has recently announced a lawsuit against Mat Staver and Liberty Counsel, a Christian-based legal service.
Ah yes, that homosexual lifestyle©. Hard to understand why MassResistance is designated a hate group. They cannot help themselves. It seems to me that SPLC won that case for consumer fraud by JONAH. A jury satisfactory to both sides reached that conclusion. Conversion therapy has no scientific support which is why JONAH lost. The second part of that is incorrect. A woman denied court-ordered visitation is suing Staver and Liberty Counsel after the judge in the case cleared the case for her to do so. The allegation is very serious. It is that Staver and Liberty Counsel participated in a parental kidnapping out of the country. What is MR's point in bringing it up?
In addition to their odious “hate group” campaign, the SPLC writes accompanying articles about pro-family leaders that contain purposeful lies and misrepresentations. This is frequently repeated as “fact” by liberal websites and Wikipedia authors, and also by the mainstream media. Here is the SPLC’s write-up of Brian Camenker of MassResistance.
Actually the piece does not cite a write-up of Camenker. Rather, the link is to a piece on MR's website outlining all the supposed lies. Here is just a sample:
Research from the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) is medically accurate and has not been “discredited” by any unbiased medical organization.
Every professional medical and counseling peer organization has concluded that sexual orientation is innate and that efforts to change sexual orientation are unlikely to succeed as well as potentially harmful. That effectively discredits NARTH's very existence. Is every mainstream medical and counseling organization biased? Is this another conspiracy?

One more:
The Left, including those in the mainstream media, knows that it can never win the war of public opinion using facts and reason. That’s why they’re obsessed with the need to shame, intimidate, and harass conservatives and people of faith who dare to speak out. It is a classic bullying tactic.
Aside from the awkward grammar, about two-thirds of our population support same-sex marriage. I think that we have been successful in the area of public opinion. There is no reason not to be. Rational people realize that LGBT people are LGBT innately in contrast to making bad choices. Speaking of bad choices, MassResistance erred by making allegations without offering a scintilla of proof. The effect is to render the accuser obviously guilty of dishonesty. But the folks at MR will never get that part.

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