Michael “Mikey” Weinstein recently publicized a letter (PDF) he wrote to Jeff Bezos, CEO of online shopping giant Amazon, to protest the removal of the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) from the company’s charity program AmazonSmile. Weinstein titled his letter a “principled DEFENSE of RIVAL organization” (emphasis original) and said:
Frankly, we disagree with ADF’s positions on almost everything in law and policy. For years we’ve crossed swords and fought for our respective opposing views. But it is one thing to fight for ideals, and it’s another to marginalize and suppress others — even those you vehemently disagree with. And that is what’s happening when ADF is branded a “hate” group and thrown out of the Amazon Smile program.
It sounds noble, but it is very unusual for Weinstein — and wholly inconsistent Read more
Hemant Mehta recently stumbled all over himself trying to say that the Southern Poverty Law Center’s designation of “hate groups” is fine when it comes to Christians, but not when it comes to atheists (something he first tried to do last November).
Just a few days ago Mehta defended the SPLC when Guidestar, a charity review site, began including the SPLC’s ‘opinion’ on charities it claims are “hate groups”. Within the conversation, Mehta appropriated the SPLC’s “hate group” designation for some Christian groups. When those groups complained they were being targeted for their beliefs, Mehta said “that’s a lie” and celebrated the idea they would lose charitable donations for the designation. (Guidestar subsequently dropped the categorization under pressure.)
Then, the news broke that Maajid Nawaz is suing the SPLC. He’s a former Read more
Hemant Mehta of the “Friendly Atheist” blog was recently aghast that Ayaan Hirsi Ali — a Somali born woman who grew up Muslim but is now an atheist and outspoken critic of Islam — was added to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s list of “anti-Muslim extremists.”
The SPLC, of course, is famous for its list of “hate groups.” They’ve affixed that label to certain conservative Christian organizations that say homosexuality is an evil that can and should be cured — but not churches that merely believe it’s a sin…
But now, a couple critics of Islam have joined the club, which makes me wonder why anyone should take the SPLC seriously at this point.
Mehta is blind to his own irony: He says it’s fine for the SPLC to designate “hate groups” who speak out about homosexuality, but he’s suddenly offended when those who speak out about Read more
The American Family Association recently made waves when it published an interactive “bigotry map” designed to “expos[e] anti-Christian bigotry in America.”
Highlighted in Albuquerque, New Mexico, is none other than Michael “Mikey” Weinstein’s Military Religious Freedom Foundation.
While the atheist Center for Inquiry “demand[ed]” to be added to the AFA’s map, Weinstein’s reaction was not so jovial: He had his lawyers fire off a letter demanding to be removed. In an unusually whiney-sounding missive, Read more
The US military’s equal opportunity offices, including its primary training school at DEOMI (Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute), have come under fire under the past year for a variety of issues, including labeling Christians as “extremists,” using the Southern Poverty Law Center as a “reference,” and lamenting “white privilege” in the DEOMI training manual.
In an interesting twist to the story, the newly appointed DEOMI commander, Col. Morris “Reese” Turner, made a point of noting his “strong Christian faith” in a biographical interview with a local paper.
DEOMI also produces official posters for heritage and diversity months, which includes the celebration of homosexuality and bisexuality. Read more
Despite recent scandals regarding the DoD’s alleged classification of Christians as “extremists” — including an Army-wide standdown in Equal Opportunity training over the controversies — the DoD says it will continue to use the Southern Poverty Law Center as a “reference” in its Equal Opportunity training.
A DoD spokesman answered that while the agency will remove “hate groups” information provided by the SPLC from the training materials used at its Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI), the DoD will continue to use the SPLC’s data in its “non-federal reference material” for DEOMI.
The SPLC — whose work has been specifically cited in recent Army briefings — is one of several “non-Federal” sources the DoD plans to continue using:
“Some of the non-Federal entities used to inform DEOMI’s training,” said Christensen, “include: Anti-Defamation League; Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism; Know Gangs, Political Research Associates, Read more
FoxNews commentator Todd Starnes reports on a LifeWay survey that says 59% of Christians believe they are losing the “culture war.”
“Ten years ago we were talking about who would win the culture war and now we’re talking about how will Christian rights be protected after the culture war,” Ed Stetzer, the president of LifeWay Research told me…
Starnes lists examples of “religious persecution in the United States,” and he starts with the US military: Read more
A writer at the Engage Family Minute blog begins his post with an appropriate question:
How exactly is discrimination defined, and what constitutes discrimination?
As has been noted here before (“Of Bullies, Bigots, Homophobes: The Changing American Vocabulary“), it is not uncommon for people or groups to appropriate terminology — or even twist semantics — to support their cause. Prior discussions have already covered several: homophobe, bigot, bully, tolerance, and Michael “Mikey” Weinstein’s use of “rape”.
“Discrimination” was also briefly mentioned, though it has again surfaced in incorrect usage (at least by its traditional definition). In short, it bears reminding that in order to discriminate, one has to act. By themselves, thoughts, beliefs, and words cannot be discriminatory — again, by definition.
An example: The Catholic Church discriminates when Read more