Intolerance Identified - Morris Dees and The Southern Poverty Law Center

by Karen De Coster, originally published on, December, 2000, and The Laissez Faire City Times, December, 2000

"Hate-watching" has become an enterprising sport in America. As so-called hate-watch groups and organizations spring up all across the country, they are venerated for their courage and unwavering defense of minority classes. They are touted as the great overseers of the civil rights granted to minorities by government.

For persons and organizations that wish to become powerful and recognizable to mainstream America, hate-watching is a clever way to earn a secure living. They can do so under the false flag of protecting minority identity and opportunity, though crying hate has become the call to arms for the protected classes against traditional culture.

Who are the true intolerants? Are they fervent Christians? Or is it the so-called watchdog groups that profit from the anger and backlash of protected classes who are themselves strangled by government policies?

The most notable of such prevaricators is the not-so-impecunious Southern Poverty Law Center, headed by lawyer Morris Dees. Mr. Dees is a leftist icon of sorts. He manages to reap gorgeous profits from his not-for- profit business through website terrorism and hyper-emotional junk-mail campaigns.

The SPLC is the lead aggressor against right-wing organizations that are ideologically unappealing to Mr. Dees and his fellow intolerants. What SPLC does is use its government-approved coercive powers to ruin businesses, smear reputations, and try to force people to participate in their farcical diversity movement through "monitoring," while exposing alleged fascists, white-supremicists, and even (gasp!) pro-Confederates.

These accusations are gathered in the SPLC's Intelligence Report, a scuttlebutt rag that generates severe intolerance against any ideological group that doesn't agree with its pinko views. One of the latest hits from the Intelligence Report has been directed toward the Ludwig von Mises Institute of Auburn, Alabama, an educational organization dedicated to Austrian economics and classical liberalism. Such dedicated passions toward education and the advancement of intellectual spirit apparently are not sanctioned by the SPLC's intolerant bunch.

Another organization that has come under fire is the League of the South, an organization inspired by the political theory of self-government, especially with regard to local rule. As if smearing the Mises Institute and the League of the South weren't enough, the SPLC attempts to link the two, in effect, implying that any educational institution in the South with libertarian-like views must be composed of Confederate sympathizers, and therefore, is racist and hate-filled.

Victimology is an art at SPLC. The past deeds of Morris Dees sensationalize race relations and patriotic uprisings, while encouraging deep fear in individuals who see themselves as victims of an unfair political system. Without producing this fear and victimological thinking, the center could not possibly raise the huge funds necessary for such a tireless spy machine.

The SPLC is exactly such a contrivance, in fact. It is also a newspeak machine that does not use logical reasoning or philosophical arguments to make its case, but rather, emotional attacks that bait the weak-minded, and seduce those looking for monetary "justice."

Organizations like the SPLC are empowered by government agencies in the civil rights sector, and they are supported by a leftist media that allows them unchallenged on-air exposures of purported right-wing intolerance groups.

HBO recently ran a cable special entitled Extremists, which focused on Internet groups that don't fall within the tolerance guidelines set forth by hate-watchers. Of course, Mr. Dees and his Intelligence Report editor Mark Potok took center stage in this documentary, pointing out how extremist, right-wing America, with the famed Turner Diaries as its bible, advances the cause of white people and terrorizes oppressed minorities.

The SPLC seems to take special pride in the fact that it can use tolerance education as the carrot, and draw upon its Northern liberal junk-mail base for its attack on all the evils of "extremist" America. It's interesting how the National Association for the Advancement of White People (NAAWP) gets flagged for hate, while the NAACP is a perfectly legit organization.

Throughout the HBO piece, Messrs. Potok and Dees appear against an impressive backdrop of stately bookshelves in fancy offices. However, when a self-styled racist appears on screen, his backdrop is the SPLC's favorite target: the Confederate flag. This is a purposeful attempt, of course, to smear the symbol of the noble causes of Southern secession and personal liberty.

The HBO documentary treats religious-based organizations in such a way as to propagate the notion that all hardcore religious activism is "Aryan" in temperament, excessive, and therefore dangerous to non-whites.

It is interesting to note how the SPLC also includes patriot groups in the Intelligence Report. This is due to the fact that such groups "advocate or adhere to extreme anti-government doctrines," and this undermines the State worship that makes people like Mr. Dees opulent by way of the multicultural-tolerance issue. One must remember that it was the Oklahoma bombing that put the SPLC propaganda machine on the map.

In fact, SPLC must have licked its chops after Oklahoma City, as they stormed into Michigan - a state known for citizen militias - and set up camp for the enduring attack on patriotic movements. Mr. Dees was as familiar to many Americans during this ordeal as was Dan Rather. One can almost say that Dees was to Oklahoma City what Wolf Blitzer was to the Persian Gulf.

Now the SPLC takes it on the road, as Dees travels about the country preaching his brand of liberality. He often speaks before college audiences, where supple minds are ripe for feel-good altruism.

This man works to gain the trust of young people by displaying the evils of admitted racist organizations that have a tiny number of adherents. Mr. Dees then proceeds to propagate the notion that conservative organizations -- particularly those that are pro-gun or anti-government - pose the same dangers, and thus, must be impeded.

The seeds of multiculturalism are planted in all forms of the media, and the harvest of fear and anger is in full growth. Accordingly, the nobility of the cause of liberty is buried beneath the scare tactics that associate virtuous symbols and causes with loathing and intolerance. For that reason, the professional hate-watchers are the profiteers of divisiveness.


Karen De Coster is a politically incorrect, paleolibertarian CPA, and an MA student in economics at Walsh College in Michigan.

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