SPLC: Father of the Bribe

By Tony Perkins

Family Research Council – They say you can’t buy love, but that won’t stop SPLC from trying! Money may be no object for the anti-Christian group, but mainstream support certainly is. Facing growing scrutiny for their tainted and biased “research” from the military to the media, Southern Poverty Law Center is resorting to bribing teachers to force their agenda into the public schools where unsuspecting children reside.

In Hawaii, eyebrows shot up at the news that SPLC was giving teachers a $250 kickback just for attending a local training session on “Teaching Tolerance.” The cash incentive struck a lot of people as odd, including state Representative Bob McDermott. In academia, where educators are used to paying for trainings — not profiting from them — McDermott thought something smelled fishy with SPLC’s offer. In a letter to Hawaii State Department of Education District Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi, he asked the office to put the brakes on the session. Matayoshi refused and instead gave the department’s blessing to the workshop, which SPLC held the first weekend of March.

Frustrated by the Superintendent’s carelessness, McDermott filed an ethics complaint demanding to know what part of the law justifies this kind of activity, because, he insists, “there is none.” “Are Hawaii teachers being bribed to promote a specific point of view in these materials to students?” he asked. Obviously, it says a lot about the value of what SPLC is peddling if it has to pay its audience to be indoctrinated.   In the meantime,  Hawaiian educational authorities should know better than partnering with a group linked in federal court to domestic terrorism. An organization that inspired a shooter like Floyd Corkins doesn’t know the first thing about “Teaching Tolerance.”

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For McDermott, who’s also leading the state’s charge against an explosive new sex ed curriculum, SPLC’s pay-to-play scheme “raises all kinds of ethical issues.” “The theme of the curriculum,” he told reporters, “is so-called ‘anti-bias,’ unless, of course, you are a person of faith.” Digging deeper into SPLC’s materials, the state rep was outraged to see that almost 25% of the example scenarios “deal with gay acceptance.” “Why is the gay population — which is no more than 4% of the general population — consistently disproportionately represented in these new teaching materials?”

Maureen Costello, who directs the SPLC program on the ground, said innocently that the resources are aimed at making everyone feel “welcomed, valued, and respected.” If that were true, it would be quite an ideological shift for SPLC, which has recently focused on marginalizing Christians and conservatives. Like us, Rep. McDermott understands that the battle for the hearts of the next generation starts in the classroom. “I want political agendas, right or left, out of the schools. I want the teachers to spend the precious little time they have with students educating them in the basics… Make no mistake. This program only presents one side of the story.”

And unfortunately, it’s a program that may be coming to a school district near you. According to Costello, SPLC has been dangling money in front of educators — and schools — for the opportunity to teach the kind of “tolerance” that motivates people to bring guns into office buildings and shoot innocent people. We applaud Representative McDermott for trying to protect kids and parents from this extreme agenda. Even with the best advocates money can buy, SPLC is a danger to academia, the military, the media, and the common good. For further proof that SPLC ignores liberal “hate,” check out this Breitbart article.

(Via FRC’s Washington Update)

Tony Perkins is president of the Washington, D.C.-based Family Research Council. He is a former member of the Louisiana legislature where he served for eight years, and he is recognized as a legislative pioneer for authoring measures like the nation’s first Covenant Marriage law.

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.

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