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There’s been a surge in recent months of violence and threats on university campuses from left-wing activists who intend to silence opposing viewpoints.

It happened when conservative commentator Ann Coulter was scheduled to speak at the University of California at Berkeley. Activists threatened violence and school officials closed down the scheduled event.

So on Tuesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee, chaired by Sen. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, held a hearing to take testimony about how school officials can protect freedom of speech as well as their students.

The committee took comments from Richard Cohen of the Southern Poverty Law Center.

That’s the group cited by Floyd Corkins as his source of information when he attempted to commit mass murder at the evangelical Family Research Council office in Washington, D.C.

Get the Whistleblower Magazine’s revelations about SPLC in its “The Hate Racket” issue, which shows how the group fools government into equating Christians and conservatives with Klansmen and Nazis – and rakes in millions in the process.

It’s also the group that was “liked” on social media by James Hodgkinson, the man who tried to kill Republican members of Congress last week at a baseball practice.

“Hodgkinson was merely swimming in the pond created by the SPLC and other groups like it,” said Lt. Gen. William Boykin, FRC’s executive vice president.

Boykin wrote a letter to the committee on the occasion of the SPLC testimony, warning members of the group’s true agenda.

“I have provided this background information in order to disabuse the committee of any notion it may have that the SPLC cares about the preservation of free speech rights on college campuses for those with whom they disagree on key issues,” he explained.

“Nothing could be further from the truth.”

The hearing, titled “Free Speech 101: The Assault on the First Amendment on College Campuses,” took testimony from students, college officials and others.

“It is extremely ironic that one of your witnesses is actually an enemy of free speech,” wrote Boykin. “I write here of Richard Cohen of the Southern Poverty Law Center.”

The retired officer told senators SPLC “has refined a method of defaming its political opponents that is extremely effective when combined with the massive war chest it can rely upon – an amount that totals over $319 million as of late 2016.”

He said the organization “targets” victims with “hate” and “extremist” labels.

“The SPLC bullies and dehumanizes many ordinary Americans by calling them names and portraying them grotesquely in terrible photographs and sketches,” he wrote.

The group does not want open debate, said Boykin.

One of the targets of SPLC’s “hate” label in 2016 was then-presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson.

Boykin pointed out that in 2007, SPLC’s Mark Potok gave an address in which he made this observation about SPLC’s modus operandi: “Sometimes the press will describe us as monitoring hate crimes and so on . … I want to say plainly that our aim in life is to destroy these groups, to completely destroy them.”

Boykin said SPLC has “no interest in an exchange of ideas, even with peaceful, mainstream groups like Alliance Defending Freedom, the Center for Family and Human Rights (C-FAM), the Family Research Council (FRC), and the Pacific Justice Institute whose views may differ greatly from theirs.”

He cited the Corkins case that linked SPLC to domestic terror.

“Corkins came to the FRC building with the intention of using a semi-automatic pistol to kill everyone there and then place Chick-fil-A sandwiches by 15 of those bodies. In a chilling interrogation video released by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and played in court, Corkins said he picked his targets by relying on the SPLC website’s Hate Map.”

Boykin said it was not surprising then that Hodgkinson had “liked” SPLC on Facebook.

Boykin charged the “depth to which the SPLC will sink knows almost no bottom,” citing an SPLC attack on human rights activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who opposes “a darker, violent side of Islam.”

Ali suffered female genital mutilation as a child and wrote about it in her book “Infidel.”

SPLC’s characterization was that she “says” she suffered FGM.

Boykin said: “It is mind-boggling that a ‘progressive’ organization like the SPLC would cast doubt on her claims in a personal matter like this.”

In his comments, Cohen claimed presidential politics and growing white nationalist activity are making campuses increasingly polarized.

WND reported Hodgkinson, who was killed by police when he shot at members of Congress, apparently was a fan of SPLC.

Hodgkinson also “liked” many anti-Republican, far-left Facebook pages, including “Dump Trump,” “Liar, Liar, Republican campaign on fire,” “Republicans ARE the problem,” “Berniecrats United to Resist Trump” and “Fire the Republican Government.”

Overtly anti-Republican groups were not the only things he liked on Facebook. His “liked” TV shows favored by the left-wing such as “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” on HBO, “The Rachel Maddow Show” on MSNBC and “The Daily Show” with Trevor Noah on Comedy Central.

Get the Whistleblower Magazine’s revelations about the SPLC, in its March 2015 edition of “The Hate Racket,” the complete story of how one group fools government into equating Christians and conservatives with Klansmen and Nazis – and rakes in millions doing it.

The legal team at Liberty Counsel, criticizing SPLC for “falsely and recklessly labeling Christian ministries as ‘hate groups,'” noted SPLC is “responsible for the first conviction of a man who intended to commit mass murder targeted against a policy organization in Washington, D.C.”

“On August 15, 2012, Floyd Corkins went to the Family Research Council with a gun and a bag filled with ammunition and Chick-fil-A sandwiches. His stated purpose was to kill as many employees of the Family Research Council as possible and then to smear Chick-fil-A sandwiches in their faces (because the founder of the food chain said he believed in marriage as a man and a woman). Fortunately, Mr. Corkins was stopped by the security guard, who was shot in the process. Corkins is now serving time in prison. Mr. Corkins admitted to the court that he learned of the Family Research Council by reading the SPLC’s hate map.”

WND reported a video showed Corkins entering the FRC offices and confronting Leo Johnson.

Corkins later was sentenced to prison for domestic terrorism. It was during an interview with FBI officers that Corkins named SPLC as his source of information.

Central to the case, according to the government’s document, was that Corkins “had identified the FRC as an anti-gay organization on the Southern Poverty Law Center website.”

FRC officials repeatedly have explained that they adhere to a biblical perspective on homosexuality but are not “anti-gay.”

SPLC also exhibited behavior so egregious that it was reprimanded by the far-left administration of Barack Obama.

Judicial Watch, citing a letter to Michael M. Hethmon, senior counsel for the Immigration Reform Law Institute, and others, said the DOJ reprimand came in 2016 but was “kept quiet at the agency’s request.”

“[It] involves the SPLC’s atrocious behavior during immigration court proceedings. Two groups that oppose illegal immigration, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) and the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI), were the target of personal, baseless and below-the-belt attacks from SPLC attorneys during official immigration court proceedings. The SPLC filed a motion attacking and defaming the two respected nonprofits by describing them as ‘white supremacist,’ ‘eugenicist,’ ‘anti-Semitic,’ and ‘anti-Catholic.’ In its reprimand the DOJ says it is troubled by the conduct of SPLC lawyer Christopher Strawn and that his conduct ‘overstepped the bounds of zealous advocacy and was unprofessional.’ Furthermore, SPLC made ‘uncivil comments that disparaged FAIR and its staff,’ the rebuke states, adding that the language constitutes frivolous behavior and doesn’t aid in the administration of justice,” Judicial Watch explained.

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“The Obama administration kept the reprimand confidential and asked FAIR and IRLI to keep it under wraps. In the meantime, SPLC continues to publicly trash the groups and escalate attacks against them by putting them on the official hate list. The executive director and general counsel of IRLI, Dale Wilcox, says his nonprofit and FAIR will keep fighting for immigration policies that put America first. ‘The SPLC’s latest tactic in its never-ending witch-hunt and the federal government’s resulting reprimand should send the following message to the mainstream media,’ Wilcox said: ‘Stop using the SPLC as a legitimate hate-watch source in your news coverage. That a cabal of biased list-keepers can play such an important role in distorting the immigration debate in this country is testament to the utter failure of much of the mainstream media which frequently publishes their inflammatory commentary and refuses to question their baseless methods or financial motivations,'” Judicial Watch said.

The letter explained the DOJ stopped short of “formal disciplinary proceeding[s],” instead opting for the rebuke in the letter.

“We take this opportunity to remind the attorney practitioners involved in this misconduct that practitioners before EOIR should be striving to be civil and professional in their interactions with each other, the public, the board and immigration courts. Attorneys owe a duty of professionalism to their clients, opposing parties and their counsel, the courts, and the public as a whole.”

To really understand the war zone America is becoming, read the June issue of WND’s acclaimed monthly Whistleblower magazine, “RAGE AND VIOLENCE: Why the Left has gone insane in the Age of Trump.”

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