Yes, Astro Zombie, and it's precisely that kind of belief which contributed to the recent electoral victory in which the Democrats are still basking.
When the United States entered World War I in 1917, the Klan grew in strength. America now had to be ‘protected’ from the Germans and others: Catholics, Jews, Socialists, blacks and union leaders. Membership in the Klan was a way for citizens to help out the war effort in Europe by making sure American soil was kept ‘pure.’ The Klan was quickly becoming something universal and not just a southern racist group. William Simmons now realized that the Ku Klux Klan could now become a national fraternal movement.
"The favorite slander used by the Democrats for anyone they disagree with is “extremist”; yet there is hardly any people more politically extreme than the Southern Poverty Law Center, now part of Homeland Security."
The question of where First Amendment-protected radical advocacy ends and criminality begins is exactly the sort of question with which courts have long grappled. In the 1969 case of Brandenburg v. Ohio, the Supreme Court unanimously reversed a criminal conviction of a Ku Klux Klan leader who -- surrounded by hooded indivduals holding weapons -- gave a speech threatening "revengeance" against any government official who "continues to suppress the white, Caucasian race." The Court held that the First Amendment protects advocacy of violence and revolution, and that the State is barred from punishing citizens for the expression of such views. The Brandenburg Court pointed to a long history of precedent protecting the First Amendment rights of Communists to call for revolution -- even violent revolution -- inside the U.S., and explained that the Government can punish someone for violent actions but not for speech that merely advocates or justifies violence...
“Led since 1986 by Gary DeMar, American Vision is one of the primary exponents of the doctrine of ‘Christian Reconstruction’ — the idea that the U.S. was founded as a ‘Christian nation’ and that its democracy should be replaced with a theocratic government based on Old Testament law. As a practical matter, that means American Vision, which describes its goal as ‘restor[ing] America’s Biblical foundation,’ backs the death penalty for practicing homosexuals.
DeMar has modified that dictum slightly in the past, saying that homosexuals wouldn’t all be executed under a ‘reconstructed’ government, but that he did believe that the occasional execution of ‘sodomites’ would serve society well because ‘the law that requires the death penalty for homosexual acts effectively drives the perversion of homosexuality underground, back into the closet.’ More recently, while hosting American Vision’s ‘The Gary DeMar Show’ in December 2009, Joel McDurmon, the group’s research director, agreed that the Bible does call for killing homosexuals. And, he said, ‘when most of a society is Christian, is biblical, then it [execution of gays] is perfectly normal; it should definitely be in place.’”
One of the most insidious elements of homophobia is that is you spoke against it, you were presumed to be a homosexual.
“[Apple] has sparked outrage over an app it did approve, Manhattan Declaration, that is a ‘call of Christian conscience’ inviting users to take a stand against gay marriage by signing a 4,700-word ‘declaration’ penned by Christian clergy, scholars, and others.
The Manhattan Declaration, the text of which is included in the app, ‘speaks in defense of the sanctity of life, traditional marriage, and religious liberty,’ according to its creators. The app ‘issues a clarion call to Christians to adhere firmly to their convictions in these three areas,’ and allows users to add their signatures to the declaration.
Users can also take a short, 4-question survey that includes questions such as ‘Do you support same sex relationships?’ or ‘Do you support the right of choice regarding abortion?’ Answer ‘yes’ to either of the above and you'll be told you replied incorrectly.
Apple awarded the app a rating of ‘4+,’ which means the App Store found the app to contain ‘no objectionable material.’
On the other hand, apps like ‘Obama Trampoline,’ the Bush-lampooning ‘My Shoe,’ or iBoobs, which shows pixelated jiggling breasts, have previously been banned, in some cases for poking fun at political figures, and in others, for their sexually suggestive content.
Bloggers have fired back at Apple--and the app's creators.
The app fosters ‘homophobia and extreme anti-choice views,’ writes Change.org, which blasts the principles spelled out in the declaration for ‘[boiling] LGBT people down to little more than deviant cretins.’ PinkNews calls the app ‘anti-gay.’ One website created a petition asking Apple to remove the app.
The creators of the Manhattan Declaration responded to the ‘radical liberals’ with its own blog post, saying, ‘These radicals often pollute the debate with ranting. They rant about 'equal rights,' without explaining how homosexuality deserves it, 'women's rights,' without explaining how women have a right to kill their child, and even 'hateful Christians,' without showing instances where we hate.’”
U.S. Christian Evangelical Groups Fomenting Anti-gay Hatred in Uganda.
Watch: 'Missionaries of Hate', a New Documentary Exploring American Evangelical Anti-Gay Efforts in Uganda.
"Social and religious conservatives generally oppose the [Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention] bill [which is now law]. Many ignore the protections that the bill would give to women, men, the disabled, and heterosexuals. They appear to be concerned almost exclusively with protections given to persons of one sexual orientation: homosexuals. They are concerned that a person who verbally attacks gays or lesbians could be charged under the act if any violent or criminal act resulted from the speech. This appears to be a misinterpretation of the bill, because it could only be applied to a person who has actually committed a crime. Speeches attacking gays and lesbians are not a criminal behavior; they are protected speech under the First Amendment."
"A hate crime is a traditional offense like murder, arson, or vandalism with an added element of bias. For the purposes of collecting statistics, Congress has defined a hate crime as a 'criminal offense against a person or property motivated in whole or in part by an offender's bias against a race, religion, disability, ethnic origin or sexual orientation.' Hate itself is not a crime—and the FBI is mindful of protecting freedom of speech and other civil liberties.
...Investigating hate crime is the number one priority of our Civil Rights Program. Why? Not only because hate crime has a devastating impact on families and communities, but also because groups that preach hatred and intolerance plant the seeds of terrorism here in our country."
"Every act of violence is tragic and harmful in its consequences, but not all crime is based on hate. A hate crime or bias motivated crime occurs when the perpetrator of the crime intentionally selects the victim because of who the victim is. A bias motivated crime affects not only the victim and their family but an entire community or category of people and their families. A study funded by the Bureau of Justice Statistics released September 2000, shows that 85 percent of law enforcement officials surveyed recognize bias motivated violence to be more serious than similar crimes not motivated by bias.
Hate crimes are destructive and divisive. A random act of violence resulting in injury or even death is a tragic event that devastates the lives of the victim and their family, but the intentional selection and beating or murder of an individual because of who they are terrorizes an entire community and sometimes the nation. For example, it is easy to recognize the difference between check-kiting and a cross burning; or the arson of an office building versus the intentional torching of a church or synagogue. The church or synagogue burning has a profound impact on the congregation, the faith community, the greater community, and the nation.
According to FBI statistics, of the over 113,000 hate crimes since 1991, 55% were motivated by racial bias, 17% by religious bias, 14% sexual orientation bias, 14% ethnicity bias, and 1% disability bias.
The [Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention -- aka Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention] Act is supported by thirty-one state Attorneys General and over 210 national law enforcement, professional, education, civil rights, religious, and civic organizations, including the AFL-CIO, the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, and the NAACP. A November 2001 poll indicated that 73% of Americans favor hate-crime legislation covering sexual orientation." *
I'm not totally convinced that that's true, to be honest. You hear all the noise that Palin et al make about liberal elitism, being out of touch with ordinary Americans, and generally trying to make conservative positions socially and politically verboten?
This is exactly the kind of thing they're talking about.
Second, it gives massive fodder to the right wing in its persecution complex because it's actually calling for them to be persecuted.
...Categorizing something as "hate speech" is a blatant attempt to categorize an opinion as being outside the protections of the law. Fortunately, the courts have taken a pretty dim view of this, though in countries which don't have an equivalent to the First Amendment, hate speech regulations are aggressively used.
I don't "hate" Morris Dees but I am leery of people and organizations that use fear as a fundraiser and doubly so for organizations so closely associated with one person. I am a longtime (almost 20 years) member of, and donor to, the ACLU and in the past have been a regular donor to The Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law but something about Mr. Dees sets the needle of my huckster meter to quivering.
"Family Research Council has, for nearly 30 years, advanced faith, family, and freedom in public discourse. We do so with civility and compassion. We hold to the indisputable fact that the family - a Dad, a Mom, and children - is the best building block of a good society, which is why we oppose efforts to transform it based on personal sexual preference.
"The Southern Poverty Law Center is a massively funded liberal organization that operates under a veneer of public justice when, in fact, they seem more interested in fundraising ploys than fighting wrongdoing.
"This is a deliberately timed smear campaign by the SPLC. The Left is losing the debate over ideas and the direction of public policy so all that is left for them is character assassination. It's a sad day in America when we can not, with integrity, have a legitimate discussion over policy issues that are being considered by Congress, legislatures, and the courts without resorting to juvenile tactics of name calling.
"The Left's smear campaigns of conservatives is also being driven by the clear evidence that the American public is losing patience with their radical policy agenda as seen in the recent election and in the fact that every state, currently more than thirty, that has had the opportunity to defend the natural definition of marriage has done so. Earlier this month, voters in Iowa sent a powerful message when they removed three Supreme Court justices who imposed same-sex marriage on the state. Would the SPLC also smear the good people of Iowa?
"Family Research Council will continue to champion marriage and family as the foundation of our society and will not acquiesce to those seeking to silence the Judeo-Christian views held by millions of Americans. We call on the Southern Poverty Law Center to apologize for this slanderous attack and attempted character assassination."
"This is about protecting marriage. This isn't about being anti-anyone. The whole idea that somehow those folks who stand up for traditional marriage, like the Family Research Council, are hateful is wrong. [The law center is] trying to marginalize and intimidate folks for standing up for marriage and also trying to equate them somehow to the KKK."
"A group representing hundreds of thousands of Christians developed an app to support life and traditional marriage, an approved app ... certified by Apple reviewers to contain no offensive material … what did Jobs do? He killed it and called those causes offensive … What’s happened over the years is that the iconic Steve Jobs has become the ironic Steve Jobs; he’s become Big Brother ... Tell Big Brother you won't be silenced."
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