Matt Barber

Fanning the flames of left-wing violence: the complicity of SPLC in the FRC shooting

Matt Barber
By Matt Barber
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August 20, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) - To borrow from President Obama’s Black Nationalist mentor, Jeremiah Wright, the Southern Poverty Law Center’s hate-baiting chickens “have come home to roost.” The hard-left group has become everything it presumes to expose.

On Wednesday, homosexual activist Floyd Corkins allegedly entered the Washington-based Family Research Council (FRC) armed with a gun and a backpack full of ammunition. He also had 15 Chick-fil-A sandwiches (FRC recently defended the food chain’s COO Dan Cathy for pro-natural marriage statements).

The only thing standing between Corkins and mass murder was FRC facilities manager and security specialist Leo Johnson. As Corkins shouted disapproval for FRC’s “politics,” he shot Johnson who, despite a severely wounded arm, managed to tackle Corkins and disarm him (of course, this is all impossible as it’s illegal in Washington, D.C., to carry a concealed weapon).

Of Johnson’s actions, D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier said, “The security guard here is a hero, as far as I’m concerned.”

I agree.

Upon hearing of Leo’s selfless act of heroism, I was reminded of John 15:13: “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”

But according to the SPLC, Leo’s heart is, instead, full of hate. In fact, everyone at FRC is hateful. After all, in 2010 the SPLC, with much fanfare, “officially certified” FRC as a “hate group” for its orthodox Christian positions on marriage and family.

Alongside violence-charged photos of actual hate groups like the Aryan Brotherhood and the KKK, the SPLC lists on its website the decidedly mainstream and always peaceful FRC.

It’s a clever strategy, dishonest and reprehensible though it may be. By juxtaposing FRC and other Christian organizations with violent extremist groups, SPLC has engaged in intellectual sloth at its worst (the organization has repeatedly declined to debate FRC President Tony Perkins over its “hate group” smear).

Rather than debating – on the merits – mainstream Christian groups with which it has ideological disagreement, SPLC has chosen, instead, the coward’s way out: demonization and marginalization through false guilt by association.

It’s a scheme not only slimy, but extremely dangerous.

If ever there were a time I’d prefer not to have been right, now is that time. Back in November 2011, I essentially predicted both the FRC shooting and the SPLC’s undeniable complicity therein.

With a column headlined, “Liberal violence rising,” I wrote, “The SPLC’s dangerous and irresponsible (‘hate group’) disinformation campaign can embolden and give license to like-minded, though less stable, left-wing extremists, creating a climate of true hate. Such a climate is ripe for violence.” (If anyone deserves to be taken out – rationalizes the unbalanced SPLC dupe – its members of this or that evil “hate group” whom, as he’s been repeatedly told, mean him great harm.)

That was before the fact. After the fact – one day after the shooting – Tony Perkins addressed exactly that which I forecast:

“Let me be clear that Floyd Corkins was responsible for firing the shot yesterday,” he told Washington reporters. “But Corkins was given a license to shoot an unarmed man by organizations like the Southern Poverty Law Center that have been reckless in labeling organizations hate groups because they disagree with them on public policy.”

The SPLC “should be held accountable for their reckless use of terminology that is leading to the intimidation and what the FBI here has categorized as an act of domestic terrorism.”

Regrettably, Mr. Perkins finds himself in a uniquely credible position to make this charge.

Still, although there remains a vast ideological divide between the SPLC and the tens of millions of Christian Americans represented by the Family Research Council, the Southern Poverty Law Center now finds itself with a brief window of opportunity to both do the right thing and rehabilitate its badly damaged reputation.

To the SPLC, I say this: Your cynical efforts to dehumanize Christians and equate biblical truth to “hate” are working better than I think even you expected. It’s now within your power to right a horrible wrong and restore a sense of peace and security to the rattled folks at FRC. What a gift that would be.

I appeal to your sense of goodwill. This is not a game. Lives are at stake. I know you have good employees (I’ve met some) who believe they’re doing the right thing; so, please, validate that belief. It’s time to remove your metaphorical “hate group” Star of David from mainstream Christian organizations before another of your ideological allies spills blood.

And to homosexual activists and other liberal groups, I say this: Rise above the fray. Let’s come together. Here is something on which even we can agree. Publicly encourage SPLC to lift this veil of fear.

Media, you, too, are on notice. Remember Wednesday’s shooting next time you even think about repeating SPLC’s “hate group” brand while addressing the Christians upon whom it’s tattooed. You also have share in the blame.

SPLC, hear me now: If, God forbid, something like this – or even worse – happens in the future and you have yet refused to retract and apologize for your “hate group” propaganda, then your hands will forever be stained with the blood of innocents.

Still, either way, we Christians are commanded to speak the truth of Christ “even unto death.”

FRC will not be deterred. “We’re not going anywhere,” Tony Perkins told reporters Thursday. “We’re not backing up; we’re not shutting up,” he vowed. “We feel that – we don’t feel, we know [that] we have been called to speak the truth. Speak it in love, but to speak the truth nonetheless – and we will not be intimidated, we will not be silenced.”

“I was there as [Leo] came to from the anesthesia,” said Perkins, “and I told him, ‘Leo, I want you to know you’re a hero.’ And he thought about it for a minute and he said, ‘You know, this hero business is hard work.’”

Heroes don’t work for “hate groups,” and FRC’s hard work is heroic indeed.

I’m proud to count them my friends.

You should be, too.

Matt Barber (@jmattbarber on Twitter) is an attorney concentrating in constitutional law. He serves as Vice President of Liberty Counsel Action.

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Dustin Siggins Dustin Siggins Follow Dustin

PBS defends decision to air pro-abortion documentary ‘After Tiller’

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By Dustin Siggins

Under pressure for showing the pro-abortion documentary "After Tiller" on Labor Day, PBS' "POV" affiliate has defended the decision in response to an inquiry from LifeSiteNews.

The producers of the film say their goal with the documentary, which tells the stories of four late-term abortion doctors after the killing of infamous late-term abortionist George Tiller, is to "change public perception of third-trimester abortion providers by building a movement dedicated to supporting their right to work with a special focus on maintaining their safety.” 

POV told LifeSiteNews, "We do believe that 'After Tiller' adds another dimension to an issue that is being debated widely." Asked if POV will show a pro-life documentary, the organization said that it "does not have any other films currently scheduled on this issue. POV received almost 1000 film submissions each year through our annual call for entries and we welcome the opportunity to consider films with a range of points of view."

When asked whether POV was concerned about alienating its viewership -- since PBS received more than $400 million in federal tax dollars in 2012 and half of Americans identify as pro-life -- POV said, "The filmmakers would like the film to add to the discussion around these issues. Abortion is already a legal procedure."

Click "like" if you are PRO-LIFE!

"This is an issue that people feel passionately about and will have a passionate response to. We are hopeful that the majority of people can see it for what it is, another lens on a very difficult issue." 

In addition to the documentary, POV has written materials for community leaders and teachers to share. A cursory examination of the 29-page document, which is available publicly, appears to include links to outside sources that defend Roe v. Wade, an examination of the constitutional right to privacy, and "a good explanation of the link between abortion law and the right to privacy," among other information.

Likewise, seven clips recommended for student viewing -- grades 11 and beyond -- include scenes where couples choose abortion because the children are disabled. Another shows pro-life advocates outside a doctor's child's school, and a third is described as showing "why [one of the film's doctors] chose to offer abortion services and includes descriptions of what can happen when abortion is illegal or unavailable, including stories of women who injured themselves when they tried to terminate their own pregnancies and children who were abused because they were unwanted."

Another clip "includes footage of protesters, as well as news coverage of a hearing in the Nebraska State Legislature in which abortion opponents make reference to the idea that a fetus feels pain." The clip's description fails to note that it is a scientifically proven fact that unborn children can feel pain.

The documentary is set to air on PBS at 10 p.m. Eastern on Labor Day.

Kirsten Andersen contributed to this article.

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Pete Baklinski Pete Baklinski Follow Pete

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He defended ‘real’ marriage, and then was beheaded for it

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By Pete Baklinski

A Christian man was executed during the night by a high-profile ruler after making an uncompromising defense of real marriage.

The Christian, who was renowned for his holiness, had told the ruler in public that his relationship with his partner was “against the law” of God. The Christian’s words enraged the ruler’s partner who successfully plotted to have him permanently silenced.

John the Baptist was first imprisoned before he was beheaded. The Catholic Church honors him today, August 29, as a martyr and saint.

While John’s death happened a little less than 2,000 years ago, his heroic stance for real marriage is more pertinent today than ever before.

According to the Gospel of Mark, the ruler Herod had ‘married’ his brother’s wife Herodias. When John told Herod with complete frankness, “It is against the law for you to have your brother’s wife,” Herodias became “furious” with him to the point of wanting him killed for his intolerance, bullying, and hate-speech.

Herodias found her opportunity to silence John by having her daughter please Herod during a dance at a party. Herod offered the girl anything she wanted. The daughter turned to her mother for advice, and Herodias said to ask for John’s head on a platter.

Those who fight for real marriage today can learn three important lessons from John’s example.

  1. Those proudly living in ungodly and unnatural relationships — often referred to in today’s sociopolitical sphere as ‘marriage’ — will despise those who tell them what they are doing is wrong. Real marriage defenders must expect opposition to their message from the highest levels.
  2. Despite facing opposition, John was not afraid to defend God’s plan for marriage in the public square, even holding a secular ruler accountable to this plan. John, following the third book of the Hebrew Bible (Leviticus 20:21), held that a man marrying the wife of his brother was an act of “impurity” and therefore abhorrent to God. Real marriage defenders must boldly proclaim today that God is the author of marriage, an institution he created to be a life-long union between one man and one woman from which children arise and in which they are best nurtured. Marriage can be nothing more, nothing less.
  3. John did not compromise on the truth of marriage as revealed by God, even to the point of suffering imprisonment and death for his unpopular position. Real marriage defenders must never compromise on the truth of marriage, even if the government, corporate North America, and the entire secular education system says otherwise. They must learn to recognize the new “Herodias” of today who despises those raising a voice against her lifestyle. They must stand their ground no matter what may come, no matter what the cost.

John the Baptist was not intolerant or a bigot, he simply lived the word of God without compromise, speaking the word of truth when it was needed, knowing that God’s way is always the best way. Were John alive today, he would be at the forefront of the grassroots movement opposing the social and political agenda to remake marriage in the image of man.

Click "like" if you want to defend true marriage.

If he were alive today he might speak simple but eloquent words such as, “It is against God’s law for two men or two women to be together as a husband and wife in marriage. Marriage can only be between a man and a woman.” 

He would most likely be hated. He would be ridiculed. He would surely have the human rights tribunals throwing the book at him. But he would be speaking the truth and have God as his ally. 

The time may not be far off when those who defend real marriage, like John, will be presented with the choice of following Caesar or making the ultimate sacrifice. May God grant his faithful the grace to persevere in whatever might come. St. John the Baptist, pray for us!

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The Wunderlich family Mike Donnelly / Home School Legal Defence Association
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German homeschoolers regain custody of children, vow to stay and fight for freedom

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By Thaddeus Baklinski

One year to the day since a team of 20 social workers, police officers, and special agents stormed a homeschooling family’s residence near Darmstadt, Germany, and forcibly removed all four of the family’s children, aged 7 to 14, a state appeals court has returned custody of the children to their parents.

The reason given for the removal was that parents Dirk and Petra Wunderlich continued to homeschool their children in defiance of a German ban on home education.

The children were returned three weeks after being taken, following an international outcry spearheaded by the Home School Legal Defense Association.

However, a lower court imposed the condition on the parents that their children were required to attend state schools in order for them to be released, and took legal custody of the children in order to prevent the family from leaving the country.

In a decision that was still highly critical of the parents and of homeschooling, the appeals court decided that the action of the lower court in putting the children in the custody of the state was “disproportional” and ordered complete custody returned to the parents, according to a statement by the HSLDA.

The Wunderlichs, who began homeschooling again when the court signaled it would rule this way, said they were very pleased with the result, but noted that the court’s harsh words about homeschooling indicated that their battle was far from over.

“We have won custody and we are glad about that,” Dirk said.

“The court said that taking our children away was not proportionate—only because the authorities should apply very high fines and criminal prosecution instead. But this decision upholds the absurd idea that homeschooling is child endangerment and an abuse of parental authority.”

The Wunderlichs are now free to emigrate to another country where homeschooling is legal, if they choose, but they said they intend to remain in Germany and work for educational freedom.

“While we no longer fear that our children will be taken away as long as we are living in Hessen, it can still happen to other people in Germany,” Dirk said. “Now we fear crushing fines up to $75,000 and jail. This should not be tolerated in a civilized country.”

Petra Wunderlich said, "We could not do this without the help of HSLDA,” but cautioned that, “No family can fight the powerful German state—it is too much, too expensive."

"If it were not for HSLDA and their support, I am afraid our children would still be in state custody. We are so grateful and thank all homeschoolers who have helped us by helping HSLDA.”

HSLDA’s Director for Global Outreach, Michael Donnelly, said he welcomed the ruling but was concerned about the court’s troubling language.

“We welcome this ruling that overturns what was an outrageous abuse of judicial power,” he said.

“The lower court decision to take away legal custody of the children essentially imprisoned the Wunderlich family in Germany. But this decision does not go far enough. The court has only grudgingly given back custody and has further signaled to local authorities that they should still go after the Wunderlichs with criminal charges or fines.”

Donnelly pointed out that such behavior in a democratic country is problematic.

“Imprisonment and fines for homeschooling are outside the bounds of what free societies that respect fundamental human rights should tolerate,” he explained.

“Freedom and fundamental human rights norms demand respect for parental decision making in education. Germany’s state and national policies that permit banning home education must be changed.

"Such policies from a leading European democracy not only threaten the rights of tens of thousands of German families but establish a dangerous example that other countries may be tempted to follow,” Donnelly warned.

HSLDA Chairman Michael Farris said that acting on behalf of the Wunderlichs was an important stand for freedom.

“The Wunderlichs are a good and decent family whose basic human rights were violated and are still threatened,” Farris said.

“Their fight is our fight," Farris stressed, "and we will continue to support those who stand against German policy banning homeschooling that violates international legal norms. Free people cannot tolerate such oppression and we will do whatever we can to fight for families like the Wunderlichs both here in the United States and abroad. We must stand up to this kind of persecution where it occurs or we risk seeing own freedom weakened.”

Visit the HSLDA website dedicated to helping the Wunderlich family and other German homeschoolers here.

Contact the German embassy in the U.S. here.

Contact the German embassy in Canada here.

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