These decisions had serious real-world consequences. Corporations and employers cut off relationships with groups and individuals targeted by the SPLC, and violent people used SPLC designations to justify attempted murder and assault. Remember the man who tried to commit mass murder at the Family Research Council? He found his target through the SPLC’s list of alleged “anti-gay groups.” Remember when an angry mob attacked Murray at Middlebury College and injured a professor? Because of the SPLC, those protesters thought they were attacking a “white nationalist.”
Moreover, its methods of determining hate and extremism are so shoddy and corrupt that it’s been forced to dole out a multimillion-dollar settlement to Maajid Nawaz, a British Muslim whom it hysterically dubbed an “anti-Muslim extremist.” In fact, Nawaz is a former Islamist who now dedicates his life to combating extremism. The SPLC was also forced to apologize for posting an “extremist file” on Ben Carson. Yes, Ben Carson.
Yet still the donations rolled in. Still the media and progressive corporations valued the organization enough to apply its hate labels to good and decent Americans — people I know and respect. Will they value it still, as the SPLC’s internal corruption is made plain?