There's a big shakeup going down at the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) this week. In a surprise announcement on Thursday, the hateful left-wing "hate watch" group disclosed the sudden firing of co-founder Morris Dees. Although the SPLC declined to specify why, reports of racial bias and a possible #MeToo situation quickly surfaced.
On Wednesday’s CBS Early Show, co-host Harry Smith highlighted a recent report by the liberal Southern Poverty Law Center claiming a recent surge in hate groups in the United States: "The Southern Poverty Law Center's Intelligence Report found 926 active hate groups in the country. That's up more than 50% from just 2000...And they say part of it is because of the election of President Obama. Other part of the responsibility goes to the deteriorating economy." An on-screen graphic read: "Rising Tide of Hatred? Report: Right Wing Extremism May Increase." [audio available here]
Smith talked to Southern Poverty Law Center founder Morris Dees about the report as well as a similar report by the Department of Homeland Security: "Your report dovetails with a brand new report from the Department of Homeland Security claiming basically the same thing...Do these -- do you feel like your report and their report sync up?" Dees declared:
I think they sync up pretty much. The report from the Department of Homeland Security should be taken very seriously. What we've found in our intelligence project we've run for a number of years here is the political climate, the election of Obama, the immigration issues that have faced the United States over the last five to ten years, and now especially the economy, is almost causing a resurgence of what we saw in the days of Timothy McVeigh. Almost a militia movement that's being reborn in the United States.
On Thursday’s CBS "Early Show," host Harry Smith had on the founder of the left-wing Southern Poverty Law Center, Morris Dees, to discuss "...the ugly news about nooses. Why this symbol of bigotry is suddenly back." Smith then went on to ask: "Is there some way to account for this resurgence in seeing this as a symbol? We've done an internet search. It's popping up all over the place." I think we are all impressed with Harry’s extensive research skills.
Beyond the recent noose controversies at Columbia University and in the Jena Six case, Smith and Dees launched into a litany of examples of racism in America and declared a rise in such sentiments:
SMITH: "You've monitored hate groups for decades now. Do you have a sense that they're flourishing, floundering? Are we -- is there a resurgence? Might this be a symbol of some resurgence?"
DEES: "Well I think definitely it is. In the last five years, we've seen a 30% increase in the number of hate groups. We're tracking at the Southern Poverty Law Center Intelligence Project some 844 hate groups in the United States, and we see that a large percentage of them, the motivation for their increase has been Latino immigrants in the United States."