Southern Poverty Law Center Faces Defamation Suit From Org It Labeled a ‘Hate Group’

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Southern Poverty Law Center Faces Defamation Suit From Org It Labeled a ‘Hate Group’

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CV NEWS FEED // The widely discredited Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) is facing a lawsuit from a pro-border security organization it labeled an “anti-immigrant hate group.” 

The SPLC is a far-left activist group known for its labeling of many mainstream conservative nonprofit organizations as “hate groups.” 

In doing this, they have placed groups such as Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), Family Research Council (FRC), and Moms for Liberty on the same list as the Ku Klux Klan.

“Many of the SPLC’s targets have sued for defamation, but almost every lawsuit has failed,” Tyler O’Neil of The Daily Signal reported Monday. “Earlier this year, however, a judge allowed one defamation lawsuit against the SPLC to move forward.”

O’Neil described the case brought by D.A. King of the Dustin Inman Society as “uniquely strong.”

“King didn’t just argue that the SPLC was lying by branding his organization, which supports the enforcement of immigration law and has legal immigrants on its board, an ‘anti-immigrant hate group’ that ‘focuses on vilifying all immigrants,’” O’Neil explained:

King argued that the SPLC had reason to doubt the claim that the Dustin Inman Society is an “anti-immigrant hate group” because the SPLC itself had explicitly stated that it did not consider his organization an “anti-immigrant hate group” years before it later did so.

In 2011, the “SPLC did not consider the society a ‘hate group.’” However, eight years later, the left-wing listmaker apparently changed its mind. “The SPLC has kept the Dustin Inman Society on that map ever since,” O’Neil wrote.

King told the Signal that what his group has “done since 2005 is try to educate people on the consequences of illegal immigration.”

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“Immigration and especially illegal immigration can be viewed in two general categories,” King said. “And people take either a pro-enforcement attitude or an anti-enforcement attitude. We are on the pro-enforcement side.”

On its website, King’s Georgia-based group describes itself as a “diverse, non-partisan coalition of Americans – including many immigrants – fighting for immigration sanity.” It further elaborates that it is “actively pro-enforcement on legal, sustainable and reduced immigration numbers that benefit American workers.”

Founded in 2003, the organization is named after Dustin Inman, a 16-year-old boy from Georgia who was killed in a 2000 car accident caused by a driver who was in the United States illegally. Again, according to the society’s website, the immigrant “was able to obtain a valid North Carolina driver’s license using his Mexican birth certificate and a Mexican Matricula Consular ID card.”

Dustin’s mother, Kathy Inman, was paralyzed as a result of the crash and died of her sustained injuries 21 years later. 

The Dustin Inman Society cites the late Barbara Jordan as an inspiration. Jordan served as a Democratic congresswoman from Texas during the 1970s and was a leading avocate of immigration control at the time.

The SPLC claims that the society is an “anti-immigrant hate group because it denigrates immigrants and supports efforts to make the lives of immigrants so hard that they leave on their own—a tactic known as ‘attrition through enforcement.’”

The SPLC further alleges that King is “comfortable working with some of the most hardcore elements of the anti-immigrant movement, including white nationalists.”

Back in 2011, FOX News profiled King, writing then that he

long has been lobbying lawmakers and rallying supporters for phone and letter-writing campaigns. The broad-shouldered, 6-foot-2 activist’s approach is sometimes confrontational and always outspoken, making him a hero among those who favor stricter immigration enforcement — and earning him plenty of enemies.

At the time, the founder of NumbersUSA, another pro-border control group, commented on King’s effectiveness as an activist. “I can’t think of anybody in my 20 years of working on this issue who has been more adroit in working inside the state Legislature to get legislation actually passed,” he said.


The SPLC has also been widely panned for its addition of so-called “radical traditionalist Catholicism” as a category of alleged “extremism.” It claims that the loosely defined group of Catholics “may make up the largest single group of serious antisemites in America.”

The infamous leaked Richmond memo from earlier this year was directly attributed to this categorization by the SPLC. The memo, which was later revealed to have originated from at least three Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) field offices, exposed the Bureau for targeting American Mass-going Catholics.

As CatholicVote reported last month, “Deceptive ‘lists’ are not the only things for which the SPLC has been discredited in its tumultuous five-decade existence.”

In addition, the controversial left-wing activist group was alleged by multiple staffers to suffer from a “systemic culture of racism and sexism” which resulted in the dismissal of SPLC cofounder Morris Dees.

Again from CatholicVote:

In a 2019 tell-all piece published by The New Yorker, former SPLC employee Bob Moser said he and his coworkers often felt like they were “pawns in what was, in many respects, a highly profitable scam.”

In a USA Today op-ed published later that year, Jessica Prol Smith called the group “a hate-based scam that nearly caused me to be murdered.” Smith, a longtime pro-life activist, explained that at the time when she was working for the [FRC], her office was attacked by a far-left domestic terrorist.

“I’ll never forget the moment I learned we were on lockdown,” Smith wrote, recounting the day’s event.

“The gunman had packed his backpack with ammo and 15 Chick-fil-A sandwiches,” Smith said, “later admitting that he had planned to smear them on our lifeless faces as a political statement.” She added that he had shot her coworker in the arm.

“It was the type of violent incident that one could expect a group that purportedly monitors ‘hate,’ like the [SPLC], to notice, research and decry,” she continued. “In fact, we were on the center’s radar but for all the wrong reasons. The assailant acknowledged later in FBI testimony that he had selected our office precisely because the SPLC had labeled my employer a ‘hate group.’”

Even after the terrorist attack that nearly resulted in the loss of life, the SPLC kept the FRC on their so-called “hate map.”

The post Southern Poverty Law Center Faces Defamation Suit From Org It Labeled a ‘Hate Group’ appeared first on CatholicVote org.

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