NY Times Cites SPLC Designation of FRC, Omits Mention of Shooting

Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center is making the media rounds again. Today he’s quoted in a NY Times story about the moderation being expressed by Christian group Focus on the Family. For contrast, the story mentions the SPLC’s designation of the Family Research Council as a “hate group”:

Such efforts have won Mr. Daly praise from unexpected quarters. The
Southern Poverty Law Center, for instance, has classified the Family
Research Council, another conservative Christian organization, as a hate
group because of its position on homosexuality. But the law center’s
senior fellow, Mark Potok, said Focus had tried to evolve with the
times.

Not mentioned by the Times is the fact that the FRC’s headquarters was targeted last August by Floyd Lee Corkins using an address he took from the SPLC’s “Hate Map.” Corkins reportedly had the addresses of several other conservative
groups in his possession when he was arrested, all of them taken from SPLC website. Tony Perkins, head of the FRC, argued the day after the shooting that the hate group designation by SPLC gave “a license” to the shooter to take action. At the time, the SPLC doubled down and refused to take any responsibility.

Last month, law enforcement revealed that Corkins had in fact used SPLC’s “Hate Map” as a targeting aid. Since then the SPLC has not issued a statement about it. So far as I can tell, they’ve said nothing. No public contrition of any kind. And now it appears the NY Times is following their lead. Not only is the SPLC’s “Hate Map” welcome back in polite society, the recent incident connecting the map to violence isn’t even mentioned when the target of that violence comes up in a story.

Two years ago, Sarah Palin was lambasted for a violent attack she had nothing to do with by a man with no political motivation. But the SPLC’s map actually was viewed and used by an attempted murderer just seven months ago. And yet the SPLC and the NY Times are obviously both content to pretend it never happened.

Update: I contacted the FRC for comment and the group’s President, Tony Perkins, sent me the following response:

It’s some what ironic that the liberal media treats SPLC as the expert on domestic terrorists and hate groups since they are the ones that have been linked in federal court to the only case of domestic terrorism in DC since the law was adopted after 9/11.

It is clear from the SPLC’s overstuffed coffers of $225 million dollars that their claims are not about protecting the public but profiting from them.

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