1/ Mitch McConnell and Trump met for lunch today after Steve Bannon called for a "season of war" against the Senate majority leader and the rest of the GOP establishment. Bannon compared McConnell to Julius Caesar and vowed to challenge any Senate Republican who doesn’t publicly condemn attacks on Trump. “Yeah, Mitch, the donors are not happy. They’ve all left you. We’ve cut your oxygen off,” Bannon said. (Politico / The Guardian / CNN)
The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated some of the organizations running the Values Voter Summit as hate groups based on analogous qualifiers used by the FBI.
SPLC has had some listings challenged in the past, but the identifying criteria they use seems reasonable. In disputed cases, quotes and official statements made by the offending groups often speak for themselves.
An organization whose primary purpose is to promote animosity, hostility, and malice against persons of or with a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, gender, or gender identity which differs from that of the members or the organization, e.g., the Ku Klux Klan, American Nazi Party.
In the least, several of the groups hold very extreme “traditionalist” views & push conspiracy theories that demonize or dehumanize entire demographics based on a single characteristic that violates “biblical law”. These views aren’t fringe nor only held by a few members—they’re held by leadership as core ideology.
For example, their Presidents, VPs, Chairmen, Senior Fellows, etc. have stated & believe the entire religion of Islam is evil, shouldn’t be protected by the 1st Amendment, and is a threat to democracy. Others have threatened physical violence against transgender people who use men’s or women’s bathrooms. Some advocate for not just denying LGBTQ persons equality/rights, but also favor criminalizing “homosexual behavior” or favor deporting them because “homosexuality is destructive to society”.
One of the groups’ Presidents, Tony Perkins, has called pedophilia a “homosexual problem” and falsely asserts gay men are more likely to molest children.
The summit also distributed a flyer advertising a book called The Health Hazards of Homosexuality, which promotes homophobia by spinning or distorting public health info.
[The book] also claims homosexuality is a mental disorder and the truth is being suppressed by “the homosexual lobby and their allies,” including the “radicalized” entertainment industry, press and educational establishments.
Semantics matter, but personally I think they’ve extended beyond simple anti-gay sentiments of “I don’t like gay sex” and ratcheted up the animosity to “we should jail or remove these people from our communities”.
Thanks, John for the extra info! I’m even more surprised that it hasn’t made it into the news, but I suppose there is so much more going on that things like this, while still so shocking, still don’t make the daily Terrible Top 10 Trump stories for news outlets.
Ah, of course, I should have said I was surprised I didn’t see it in Friday’s. I was hoping that with your skills you had found something more about the event than in the partisan media, but even if they are just anti-gay and not technically a “hate group” it is still very depressing to me.