Above, Morris Dees, co-founder of Southern Poverty Law Center
June 2019 – It has been said that the worst kind of lie is a half-truth. I once had to end a friendship with someone who I discovered had been telling half-truths on a regular basis. It’s an age-old practice – trying to make oneself look better by putting down others. At first, I tried to help my friend see how this was harming his Christian witness. I thought this manipulation of facts was just a blind spot, and he really didn’t mean to do it. However, after it continued consistently, I could no longer associate myself with him.
When pursuing a mission, we could all be tempted to use this tactic. However, the Christian must not do so. We must do our best to be fair minded and truthful, even to those we disagree with.
Sometimes, causes in the culture war are given to hyperbole, sensationalism, or outright misinformation in the name of raising awareness when, in truth, it’s about raising money. People of all stripes have been guilty of this deceit. Usually when you have to hype up a “problem” beyond what the facts reasonably call for, you are using a half-truth. One of today’s biggest lies is being spread in public by many in the mainstream media as they claim that conservative Christians hate people who are different from us just because we disagree with their beliefs or behaviors. Therefore, we are labeled as “hate groups.”
Many cite the Southern Poverty Law Center as the authority they depend on to tell them which Christian or conservative groups are hateful.
The SPLC is a far-left outfit headquartered in Montgomery, Alabama. Using distortion and quotes out of context, the SPLC loves to scare Hollywood and northeastern liberals into thinking that KKK-style hatred is on the rise again, and the SPLC must reverse this trend. Evidently, the fear-mongering works; the SPLC (a 501(c)3 “non-profit”) has raised over $500 million, much of it invested in offshore bank accounts. By the way, at the time of this writing, the three top officials at the SPLC have either resigned or been forced out in recent weeks for allegations of sexual abuse and racism within their own employee ranks.
The SPLC is the wellspring from which the American left draws to “prove” that groups or people they disagree with politically are hateful. People who write checks to the SPLC are the same people who believe that conservative Christians are what is wrong with America today.
They call themselves progressives. They now control most institutions of cultural influence – academia, social media, Hollywood, and the Democratic Party. They use that word progressive mostly because it sounds more positive than what they used to be called – secular humanists. Politically, progressives were once also known as liberals, but to be fair, there are true liberals in the traditional sense who do not hate Christians. I don’t want to conflate the two.
One way progressivism progresses is by marginalizing conservatives and Christians among the general public. Their end goal, when it comes to religion, is to outlaw it like they do in communist and totalitarian countries.
In the west, their focus is on destroying Christianity, especially evangelicalism and traditional Catholicism. Conservative Catholics are even under siege from leadership in their own church. Likewise, some mainline Protestant denominations have already been poisoned to the point of no return with progressive liberal theology. I predict some will be nearly extinct in 10 years.
But back to the word hate as used by liberals/progressives to attack Christian conservatives. It was a shrewd move on their part. They know the last thing Christians want to be known for is hate. But the SPLC now authorizes them to claim that because you believe what the Bible teaches about sexual integrity, you hate homosexuals. If you oppose illegal immigration, you hate Latinos. If you are against football players taking a knee for the National Anthem, you hate blacks and love police brutality. If you point out the dangers of Islamic supremacy, you hate Muslims. And on and on and on.
The good news is that AFA and many other Christian and conservative groups are fighting back against this slander. In a future column, I will tell you exactly how.
Pray for America. And pray for the church in America. The world doesn’t need biblical Christianity to fall.