By Jack Minor
GREELEY, Colo. – The sheriff of one of the country’s largest counties says a recent report by the Southern Poverty Law Center listing a major political party in Colorado as a dangerous group has absolutely no credibility and the group is like “the little boy who cried wolf.”
Weld County Sheriff John Cooke said the SPLC just lists groups its officials disagree with politically as “hate groups.”
Weld County has a land area greater than that of Delaware, Rhode Island and the District of Columbia combined. It’s one of few counties in the state that has no long- term debt.
Cooke said his department does not lend any credence to the information in the SPLC reports.
“We don’t pay any attention to it at all. If you’re not left wing, you’re a hate group according to them,” he said.
The SPLC has received funding from billionaire activist George Soros, who has also funded other left-wing groups including the Daily Kos, SEIU, MoveOn.org, the Huffington Post and Media Matters.
Last week, the group released its latest intelligence report, titled “The Patriot Movement Explodes.” The listing includes the Tenth Amendment Center, Oath Keepers and WND.
Mark Potek, senior fellow with the SPLC and editor of the report, said the growth of what is described as the radical right was fueled by “economic dislocation, a proliferation of demonizing conspiracy theories, the changing racial makeup of America, and the prospect of four more years under a black president who many on the far right view as an enemy to their country.”
The language in the new report is virtually identical to previous reports.
In the Spring 2010 report, Potek said, “The radical right in America expanded explosively in 2010, driven by resentment over the changing racial demographics of the country, frustration over the government’s handling of the economy, and the mainstreaming of conspiracy theories and other demonizing propaganda aimed at various minorities. For many on the radical right, anger is focusing on President Obama, who is seen as embodying everything that’s wrong with the country.”
In the current report, Potek writes, “For many extremists, President Obama is the new symbol of all that’s wrong with the country – the Kenyan president, the secret Muslim who is causing our country’s decline.”
His reason for the growth in the patriot groups is also nearly identical to the 2010 report: “The radical right grew explosively in 2011, the third such dramatic expansion in as many years. The growth was fueled by superheated fears generated by economic dislocation, a proliferation of demonizing conspiracy theories, the changing racial makeup of America, and the prospect of four more years under a black president who many on the far right view as an enemy to their country.”
Cooke says the SPLC reports contain the same “warnings” about groups that are only a threat to SPLC’s left-wing agenda and amount only to more false alarms.
“They are like the little boy that cried wolf too many times. We don’t put much stock in anything they send us,” he said.
In an attempt to stifle criticism of Obama, the group also attempts to blame the Republican presidential candidates for facilitating the spread of hate groups.
“If the primaries generate more attacks on the nation’s first black president based on complete falsehoods – that he is a secret Muslim, a Kenyan, a radical leftist bent on destroying America – it’s likely that the poison will spread. And if he wins reelection next fall, the reaction of the extreme right, already angry and on the defensive as the white population diminishes, could be truly frightening.”
This time around, the SPLC lists an influential political party as one of the patriot groups that adheres to “extreme anti-government doctrines.”
The American Constitution Party in Colorado, which was on previous lists, has been designated a major political party after the group’s gubernatorial candidate, former U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo, received 37 percent of the vote in 2010.
Doug Campbell, chairman for the ACP said, “Just who is it we are supposed to be hating?”
Campbell challenged the SPLC to provide specific evidence that members of his party are racists who are angry over having a black man as president.
“They consider everybody who doesn’t agree with their socialist agenda to be dangerous and a hate group. They are just a whiny little front group who wants to impose their theory that government is the salvation of us all on people who are individuals and want the government to stay within its constitutional boundaries,” he said.
The group has also gone after organizations that support traditional marriage. In its Winter 2010 intelligent report, the SPLC listed 13 groups, including the American Family Association, Concerned Women for America and the Family Research Council, as being “hate groups.”
Among the reasons cited for designating the AFA as a hate group was a 2010 AFA action alert warning that if homosexuals are allowed to openly serve in the military, “Your son or daughter may be forced to share military showers and barracks with active and open homosexuals.”
However, Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., an openly homosexual congressman, apparently agreed with the AFA’s assumption. Following the repeal of the ban on homosexuals serving in the military that had existed since the Revolutionary War, Frank was asked about whether heterosexuals should be forced to shower with homosexuals.
He said “the principle that homosexuals can’t shower with other people is a degree of discrimination that goes far beyond this. We don’t get ourselves dry cleaned. We tend to take showers when we go to the gym; when we play sports.”
Frank was asked if he considered it acceptable for men and women in the military to shower together. He said that would be wrong “because that would disrupt people,” and if a person does not want to shower with homosexuals they should never go to a gym or play sports.
In the 2010 report, the SPLC did not list one Muslim organization as a “hate group” despite the fact that many hold extreme views regarding homosexuality, including calling for the death of “gays.”
The Islamic Society of North America, for example, calls homosexual relationships a “deviation” from the law of Allah on its website.
James Badwai, who serves on the executive council of ISNA-affiliated Fiqh Council, has called the homosexual lifestyle “strange and contradictory” and said America’s acceptance of homosexuality is a “setback and decline” of moral standards.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations was established in the U.S. by the Muslim Brotherhood, which aims to implement Shariah, the Islamic legal system that punishes homosexual acts with death.