Letters to the editor

Reader questions Southern Poverty Law Center’s tag given to ‘hate groups’

The Southern Poverty Law Center issued a report [recently] declaring Tennessee Eagle Forum a “hate” group.

Eagle Forum was founded in 1972 by Phyllis Schlafly, a constitutional lawyer. Eagle Forum is a respected conservative interest group that promotes family integrity, U. S. immigration law and other conservative values.

The SPLC’s infamous “hate” map is peppered with groups such as Eagle Forum, which are posted alongside groups such as Louis Farrakhan’s Nation of Islam. Mr. Farrakhan is known for his anti-Jewish, anti-white speeches and opposes the LGBT community.

The SPLC is an Alabama-based 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization that raises millions from companies such as Apple, Morgan Chase and many others.

After the Washington Free Beacon examined the SPLC’s 2015 tax records, they presented their findings in an article “Southern Poverty Law Center Transfers Millions in Cash to Offshore Entities.”

The article cites Amy Sterling Casil, CEO of a California-based nonprofit consulting firm, who stated she knew of no legitimate reason for any U.S.-based nonprofit to put money in overseas, unregulated bank accounts.

In 2012, a shooter entered the Family Research Council, a Christian organization located in Washington D.C., and began firing, hitting one person. The shooter admitted he was inspired by SPLC’s reporting on the Christian group. What is the criteria used for determining if an organization is a hate group? It appears conservative and/or Christian groups hold differing political view points from the SPLC.

The SPLC was dropped by the FBI as a resource on hate crimes, but many school teachers continue to use their materials and website. They might want to take another look at this group in light of the above information.

Brenda Miller