By: Renee Nal | New Zeal
*Please see important note at the bottom of this article.
Turning Point USA (TPUSA), Prager University and private citizen Amy Mek have two things in common: They are rising stars in the conservative movement and within the past couple of weeks, they were victims of smear pieces from the highly-discredited and extremely partisan Southern Poverty Law Center.
- PragerU is not an actual university. Founded by radio host Dennis Prager, PragerU is known for short videos tacking controversial topics that are powerful and effective, and therefore, must be stopped.
- Amy Mek is a private citizen who resonates on Twitter, gaining a large following after exposing radical Islam.
- Turning Point USA, led by 24-year-old Charlie Kirk, has gained a footing on college campuses nationwide for exposing socialism and embracing limited government.
There is a clear pattern with the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). Once a conservative group/individual appears to be on the rise, the SPLC declares them to be a hate group or otherwise smears them. Any group or individual that takes a stand and is clearly resonating with Americans must be stopped by using over-the-top hyperbole and vitriol.
The very title of the piece against PragerU is revealing. Written by Brendan Joel Kelley, the article is titled “PragerU’s Influence.” The article opens with citing Princeton history professor Kevin M. Kruse, who refuted one of PragerU’s videos on Twitter, which was all the SPLC needed to justify going on the attack.
Kevin M. Kruse is not exactly a non-partisan figure, but the Southern Propaganda Law Center is not worried about objectivity. In fact, if one could conjure a prototype of condescending leftist elitist, Kruse would fit the bill quite nicely. Kruse’s book “One Nation Under God: How Corporate America Invented Christian America” won rave reviews from the usual suspects.
SPLC refers to PragerU’s “5 Minute Ideas” videos as being “an indispensable propaganda device for the right.” Kelley proclaims that some of the videos, which use subject matter experts to address certain issues, feature individuals representing “[an] extreme and combative internet incarnation of conservatism” such as Ben Shapiro, Candace Owens, Charlie Kirk, Jordan Peterson, James Damore “and others of their ilk.”
Kelly cites sociologist Francesca Tripodi, who is quite concerned about “…the connections some PragerU presenters have with white nationalist thinkers.” She cites Dave Rubin of the Rubin Report who hosts guests such as “Milo Yiannopoulos, conspiracy theorist Paul Joseph Watson of Infowars, and [Stefan] Molyneux.”
As if that is not ridiculous enough, the biggest stretch, which actually made this author laugh into an empty room, was the SPLC’s concern- not with the PragerU videos, but what comes up as “related videos” on “YouTube,” where one “can find the channel of Stefan Molyneux, an extremist who espouses pseudo-scientific ‘race realism’ propaganda.”
The author finishes grimly by stating that PragerU “seems to be yet another node on the internet connecting conservative media consumers to the dark corners of the extreme right.”
The Southern Poverty Law Center published a full-length feature article about a Twitter user who has been the victim of vicious doxxing and a smear campaign that started with the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and Luke O’Brien of the Huffington Post.
In the article, Luke O’Brien smeared Amy, revealed her full name, divulged the name of her hometown, the name of the town where she grew up, the name of her personal gym, the businesses of her family members, revealed the type of car driven by her husband and even got her husband fired.
The SPLC wanted a piece of the action, referring to Amy Mek as an “anti-Muslim troll.”
For an example of the ridiculous partisan nature of the “article,” O’Brien “reports” in part:
Her [Amy’s] Twitter timeline was one long screed that reflected the collective id of the Make America Great Again movement. Tea party rage, evangelical hokum and white supremacy ― it was all there. In sufficient volume, this kind of hate can now turn any no-account right-winger into a star on social media. And it worked for @AmyMek.
The article was shared all over social media, despite the fact that it clearly went against Twitter rules for “targeted harassment,” which define “Abuse:”
Abuse: You may not engage in the targeted harassment of someone, or incite other people to do so. We consider abusive behavior an attempt to harass, intimidate, or silence someone else’s voice.
“Hatewatch Staff” at the SPLC doubled down on Amy and used the occasion to smear anti-Jihadist Chris Gaubatz, who successfully infiltrated the Council of American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and wrote about his experience.
Instead of offering a critique of his book “Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld That’s Conspiring to Islamize America,” the SPLC doubled down on the vitriol, bragging that they “and other civil rights groups” have sought to shut down Gaubatz’s business with partner John Guandolo which trains law enforcement on the nature of Islam. The SPLC’s “Hate Watch” staff declared that Gaubatz and Guandolo “have no business training law enforcement.”
Luke O’Brien’s article incited a ton of abuse in Amy’s direction, including tweets like this:
In what appears to be a coordinated attack, The Guardian and not one, but TWO Soros-funded organizations: the “Committee to Protect Journalists” (author Alex Ellerbeck) and the Atlantic Council’s “Digital Forensic Research Lab” (author Ben Nimmo) have also piled on, claiming quite shockingly that the author of the original smear piece at the Verizon-Owned Huffington Post and his colleagues are victims of harassment and online threats, while disregarding the threats made against Amy.
CONTACT ANTIFA- we will make short work of the fascist pigs.
— Neeners777 (@marygribbin809) June 18, 2018
In fact, none of the publications trashing Amy Mek have acknowledged the incredibly vile comments and indeed, threatening language made against her in the wake of Luke O’Brien’s smear piece.
Media outlets are sending dog whistles out to their readers.
HuffPo readers heard it, these comments haven’t been deleted.
HuffPo endorses death threats. pic.twitter.com/8agugJnD6z
— Mike Cernovich 🇺🇸 (@Cernovich) June 5, 2018
As an aside, the SPLC has not surprisingly attacked Mike Cernovich, by saying in part that Cernovich “…claims to defend ‘free speech,’ in particular the freedom to harass women and make misogynistic, violent comments.”
Robert Spencer, “one of America’s most prolific and vociferous anti-Muslim propagandists,” according to the SPLC, compiled some of the threats he found against Amy Mek on the very same article doxxing her at the Huffington Post:
Robert Spencer, a major target of extremely partisan groups such as the Council on American Islamic Relations and the Southern Poverty Law Center survived a poisoning attack after appearing at a conference in Iceland.
Turning Point USA
Another article by Brendan Joel Kelley of the Southern Propaganda Law Center capitalizes on a memo by another conservative group (incidentally, the group appears to have been hijacked by someone who hates conservatives because otherwise it makes no sense) by declaring that Turning Point USA (TPUSA) is “accused” of “boosting their numbers with racists.”
Turning Point USA accused by long-established conservative student group of ‘boosting their numbers with racists’ https://t.co/mSMQ19WIJy
— Hatewatch (@Hatewatch) June 15, 2018
The laughable charge is even more ridiculous considering the very popular Communications Director for TPUSA is a black American Candace Owens.
“Now that I’ve been free, I know what a dreadful condition slavery is. I have seen hundreds of escaped slaves but I never saw one who was willing to go back and be a slave” -Harriet Tubman
I’ve seen black liberals go conservative, but never seen a black conservative go liberal.
— Candace Owens (@RealCandaceO) May 2, 2018
One could imagine author Brendan Joel Kelley clutching his pearls as he laments:
“TPUSA is no stranger to anti-Muslim figureheads, either; founder Charlie Kirk has thanked anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant stalwart David Horowitz for his ‘mentorship and guidance and advice throughout the years,’ and Kirk met Candace Owens, now TPUSA’s communications director, at the November 2017 David Horowitz Freedom Center’s annual Restoration Weekend.”
This is not the first time the SPLC attacked Turning Point USA, and as the organization grows and thrives, one can be certain that it won’t be the last.
Despite denials from the mainstream media and Snopes, the Southern Propaganda Law Center is an extremely partisan organization that targets groups because they do not share their radical left world view.
Their “HateWatch” blog doesn’t even pretend to be objective: “Hatewatch is a blog that monitors and exposes the activities of the American radical right.” It is difficult to imagine anyone with intellectual honesty taking this group seriously.
The over-the-top fear-mongering language espoused by the SPLC demonstrably influences low-info and potentially violent individuals like James Hodgkinson, a Bernie Sanders fan who “liked” the SPLC page on Facebook before attempting to kill Republican members of congress at a baseball game, and Floyd Lee Corkins III, who told the FBI that he was inspired to kill by the SPLC hate map, prompting him to barge into the offices of the Family Research Council, deemed a hate group by the SPLC.
Both of these potential killers sought to shoot mass amounts of people, and both seriously injured people before being stopped by good guys with guns.
The SPLC does not target groups such as “Antifa,” and indeed even appears to give the violent gaggle of anarchist /communist groups credibility by citing their favorite website: “It’s Going Down (IGD).”
See below for a promotional video featured on the IGD home page, and consider that this organization was cited by SPLC, the very same group that targets any and all prominent conservatives:
WARNING: Violent, harsh language
*Trevor Loudon is one of the many people targeted by the SPLC. He and others are calling on those “partnering with the Southern Poverty Law Center to sever their ties” with the discredited organization.
“Editors, CEOs, shareholders and consumers alike are on notice: anyone relying upon and repeating its misrepresentations is complicit in the SPLC’s harmful designation of large numbers of American citizens who, like the undersigned, have been vilified simply for working to protect our country and our freedoms,” according to the statement.