On Tuesday, ReasonTV uploaded a new video to their YouTube channel featuring John Stossel. In the video, Stossel speaks about the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), an organization "dedicated to fighting hate and bigotry and to seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of our society," according to their official website.
SPLC has an interactive "Hate Map" where you can see all the groups and people they believe promote hatred and violence. There are 917 alleged hate groups on the map.
"I once believed in the center’s mission," Stossel says. "Well-meaning people still do; Apple just gave them a million dollars. But what donors don’t know is that today, the center smears people who don’t deserve to be smeared."
SPLC’s leadership wouldn’t speak with Stossel, so instead, he speaks with Nomiki Konst of The Young Turks:
KONST: They have a history – a long history of fighting against extremists like the KKK.
STOSSEL: History, yes. But they label skeptical Muslims like Ayaan Hirsi Ali as haters.
KONST: When you have a horrible experience with religion, that’s one thing. It’s another thing to use those experiences as ammunition against others who are practicing their religion peacefully.
STOSSEL: But they’re just speaking, criticizing it.
KONST: Of course she has the right to free speech, as does the Southern Poverty Law Center has a right to push back.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali is an activist who was raised in a "devout Somali Muslim Family," according to Britannica, and suffered female genital mutilation as a young girl. Ever since she left the Islamic faith and began to speak out against extremism, Ali has faced numerous threats to her life.
Stossel then brings up the shooting at the Family Research Council (FRC). In August 2012, a man named Floyd Lee Corkins went to the FRC with the intent to kill "as many people as [he] could." Fortunately, he didn’t make it very far. After shooting a guard, he was brought under control by that very guard.
According to court documents, Corkins knew about the FRC because they were on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s "Hate Map." During an interview with federal investigators, Corkins said, "Southern Poverty Law lists anti-gay groups ... I found them online, did a little research, went to the website, stuff like that."
STOSSEL: The council’s offices were attacked by a guy with a gun. They don’t deserve this.
KONST: There’s always extremists out there, and it’s unfortunately the world that we live in, and, you know, hopefully, people can kind of separate that.
There’s so much more to this eye-opening video about the Southern Poverty Law Center. Take a look: