The Southern Poverty Law Center is being forced to reckon with its own intolerence after its two highest-ranking executives have resigned in disgrace.
“The president of the Southern Poverty Law Center, Richard Cohen, announced his resignation Friday, the latest in a series of high-profile departures at the anti-hate organization that have come amid allegations of misconduct and workplace discrimination,” the LA Times reported.
Last week, Morris Dees, a cofounder of group, was forced to resign amid vague allegations of misconduct. It was later reported that an email circulated from former SPLC employee Meredith Horton had accused management of maltreatment of female and minority employees. That prompted the group to launch an internal probe of workplace culture, led by former Obama administration official Tina Tchen.
“Whatever problems exist at the SPLC happened on my watch, so I take responsibility for them,” Cohen reportedly told staff in his email resignation.
Friday, the organization’s legal director, Rhonda Brownstein, also resigned via email.
As Big League Politics reported, and as was later confirmed by multiple outlets, tempers are boiling over inside the SPLC at what is viewed by employees as longstanding discrimination against minorities and females.
It’s difficult not to see the irony. America’s supposed protector against evil, racist, hateful, conservatives has apparently been perpetrating hate within their organization all along.
The SPLC has also been known to foment hatred externally. Most notably, Floyd Lee Corkins II pleaded guilty to terrorism charges after attempting to massacre the entire staff at the Family Research Counsel – a pro-traditional marriage group – in Washington, D.C. He told authorities that he was inspired by the SPLC’s “hate map,” which listed FRC.
Over time, the SPLC, which began by fighting the KKK nearly 40 years ago, changed its business model. In an effort to fundraise, it began conflating mainstream conservative groups with actual neo-Nazis and hate groups. The mainstream press became the lap dog for the group, viciously repeating the slanderous “hate” label, ruining the livelihoods of innocent people along the way.
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