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Southern Poverty Law Center omits 2,000 post-election anti-white hate crimes from report

Many media outlets, including university student newspapers, have touted the Southern Poverty Law Center’s report on the alleged rise in “hate crimes” since the election of Donald Trump.

According to this report, some 4,000 educators claimed to “have heard derogatory language directed at students of color, Muslims, immigrants and people based on gender or sexual orientation.”

However, Paul Sperry of the New York Post points out that the SPLC failed to mention 2,000 instances of educators reporting anti-white hate incidents (presumably of an anti-Trump nature).

The Center had (also) asked in its questionnaire to agree or disagree with the statement “I have heard derogatory language or slurs about white students” … but did not include these results..

“Asked last week to provide the data, SPLC initially said it was having a hard time getting the information ‘from the researchers.’ Pressed, SPLC spokeswoman Kirsten Bokenkamp finally revealed that ‘about 20 percent answered affirmatively to that question.’”

Twenty percent? Is that not a rather significant quantity?

From the article:

Bokenkamp did not provide an explanation for the absence of such a substantial metric — at least 2,000 bias-related incidents against white students — from the report, which focuses instead on “anti-immigrant sentiment,” “anti-Muslim sentiment” and “slurs about students of color” related to the election.

“They left that result out because it would not fit their ideological narrative,” former Education Department civil rights attorney Hans Bader said. “It was deemed an inconvenient truth.” …

“These flawed SPLC reports will be cited by left-wing special interests to try to block the confirmation of moderate and conservative people to posts such as attorney general by falsely making it look like America’s schools and streets are pervaded by bigotry,” Bader said. …

MORE: More ‘Trump-inspired’ hate crime hoaxes pop up on campus

[SPLC President Richard] Cohen tied Trump to a number of hate crimes, which he warns will only “spike” once he’s inaugurated. He noted his center recorded 867 alleged anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim and anti-black hate crimes in the 10 days following Trump’s Nov. 8 win.

But the SPLC acknowledges that it has not independently verified any of the claims. It collected most of them on its website, many anonymously. …

Bader pointed out that most of the anti-minority “hate crimes” and “hate incidents” cited by SPLC do not legally constitute hate crimes, and many involve constitutionally protected speech.

“It is simply ridiculous that SPLC treats ‘build the wall’ as hate rhetoric,” he said. The center counted people mentioning “build the wall” as 467 incidents of hate.

Sperry’s conclusion is spot-on: There are, no doubt, legitimate instances of “hate” incidents against members of minority groups, and “even one is too many.”

But expanding the definition of what constitutes “hate” (“Build the Wall”), relying on people’s word that they were “hate” victims, and then suppressing examples of “hate” in the other direction “recklessly fans the flames of anxiety” and “gives a one-sided and misleading view of post-election discord.”

Read the full piece.

MORE: Law prof: ‘Time to revisit limits on free speech’ because of Trump

MORE: Cops not convinced post-election ‘Suck it up’ note was hate crime

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Dave has been writing about education, politics, and entertainment for over 20 years, including a stint at the popular media bias site Newsbusters. He is a retired educator with over 25 years of service and is a member of the National Association of Scholars. Dave holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Delaware.