Opinion

The Southern Poverty Law Center’s bullying tactics

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Tony Perkins
President, Family Research Council
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      Tony Perkins

      Tony Perkins, a Marine Corps veteran, is President of the Family Research Council. Tony is a member of the National Advisory Committee of Pass the Balanced Budget Amendment.

Bullying is not a new phenomenon; it’s as old as man. But bullying has reached a point of near-epidemic proportions, with one in four children experiencing bullying and up to 35 percent of the U.S. workforce reporting being bullied at work. Bullying is wrong, and should have no defenders.

Bullying knows no boundaries. It’s not just boys on the playground or people at work; it can even be organizations on the national stage, as was revealed in a federal court room on February 6.

What was unveiled in the court chambers was the reality that some of the nation’s biggest bullies hide behind the façade of being against bullying!

Consider the following:

In July 2011, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) sued the Anoka-Hennepin School District in Minnesota, in apparent coordination with the U.S. Departments of Justice and Education, for discrimination based on sexual orientation related to bullying.

The Anoka-Hennepin School District is located northwest of Minneapolis, Minnesota. Since the early 1990s, Anoka-Hennepin had witnessed an ongoing debate over the nature of its sex education curriculum. The Parents Action League (PAL), located within the school district in Champlin, was founded by concerned parents in 2010 to participate in the process of developing bullying policies.

The SPLC said that the school district’s anti-bullying policy, which was neutral toward homosexuality, was “discriminatory” and sued the district. PAL, which opposed the SPLC’s imposition of its bullying policy, was then placed on the SPLC’s national hate group list along with the Klan.

Who is the real bully?

Lest one might think this was an isolated case of bullying, in January 2013, a federal magistrate judge in Colorado called out the Southern Poverty Law Center for its tactics.

In this case Eugene Delgaudio, the president of the Public Advocate of the United States, a non-profit advocacy organization, had opposed political candidates in Colorado who supported the redefinition of marriage, and used a photograph of two homosexual men to illustrate his opposition to the candidates. The SPLC teamed up with the two homosexual men to file suit against Delgaudio’s organization, and in their public filings posted Delgaudio’s home address for the sole purpose of intimidation.

In the recent investigation of Floyd Corkins, the armed gunman who attacked the Family Research Council headquarters, seriously wounding our colleague Leo Johnson, it was reported that Corkins was seen casing the headquarters of Delgaudio’s group in Northern Virginia. This information was apparently a factor in the order handed down by Judge Kathleen M. Tafoya.

Judge Tafoya ordered the SPLC to remove Delgaudio’s private address because it might subject Delgaudio to “politically motivated harassment, or even violence.”

The threat of violence was clearly not speculative. Judge Tafoya’s order came six months after the August 15 attack on FRC. How did Corkins choose FRC and his other targets?

According to statements of the federal prosecutor, the evidence revealed the source of Corkins’ hit list was, in fact, the SPLC’s “hate map,” which listed FRC’s address.

At FRC, we hate no one. We actively affirm God’s love for everyone. We also affirm what we believe to be sound theological and sociological reasons for upholding sexual morality and preserving marriage as an institution between one man and one woman.

Is this hate? Most reasonable people would say no. Evidently the Southern Poverty Law Center disagrees, and under the guise of “anti-bullying,” the SPLC is willingly fomenting hostility and violence that is jeopardizing the lives of the people with whom its members disagree, just to advance their cause.

It is time the public sees the SPLC for what it really is — a group of bullies intent on intimidating and silencing those who oppose their anti-parent, anti-Christian policies.

Tony Perkins is president of the Family Research Council.