The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.
It only took a brief rant to wreck Austin Ruse’s budding career as a “traditionalist” Catholic pundit. Ruse, president of the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (C-FAM), an anti-LGBT hate group that lobbies at the United Nations, was on American Family Radio (AFR) last week when he said that the “hard left, human-hating people that run modern universities” like Duke “should all be taken out and shot.”
While violent rhetoric is an increasingly common feature of far-right rhetoric, it is particularly jarring coming from a pundit and think tank official who markets himself as “pro-life” and “pro-family.”
After Right Wing Watch posted Ruse’s rant – and then publicized his self-pitying responses to having his own words played back – Ruse found himself suddenly isolated. The American Family Association – on whose program he made the rant – severed all ties with him, saying: “AFR condemns such comments, no matter who makes them.” One of C-FAM’s board members, Monsignor Anthony Frontiero, resigned from the board after Faithful America petitioned him to do so. And C-FAM may lose its status at the United Nations.
Ruse eventually buckled and apologized, telling Talking Points Memo:
“I deeply regret and apologize for using the expression ‘taken out and shot’ on the Sandy Rios Show this week. It was not intended to be taken literally. I have dedicated my life and career to ending violence. I regret that these poorly chosen words are being used to attack my friends at American Family Radio and American Family Association.”
Notwithstanding the apology, AFR’s Sandy Rios defended Ruse’s remarks as being “words of life” that warn believers against listening to liberal professors. Rios insisted that Ruse’s words were the kind people make in private conversation all the time, which may well be true around her workplace – AFR is a wing of the American Family Association, whose spokesperson Bryan Fischer has made all manner of offensive and outrageous remarks. ( continue to full post… )
Austin Ruse, president of the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (C-FAM), an anti-LGBT hate group that lobbies at the United Nations, has had a bad week.
First, Ruse garnered outrage last Wednesday when he stated on the air that the “hard left, human-hating people that run modern universities…should all be taken out and shot.” He was speaking about a female student at Duke University who works as an actress in the pornography industry. Ruse blamed Duke’s women’s studies department, claiming that the student “learned this” there.
In the wake of his remarks, Ruse doubled down and engaged in Twitter flame wars with detractors and lambasted the blog Right Wing Watch (RWW), which had posted audio and a transcript from the show. Ruse railed against RWW, saying that “The pajama boys over at Right Wing Watch have their panties all in a twist about what I said.” He also called liberals “dumb,” “stupid” and “idiotic” and claimed that his remarks about shooting leftists shouldn’t be taken seriously.
On Thursday, Ruse deactivated his Twitter account, grousing that it was overrun by a “leftist swarm” and on Friday, he was removed from American Family Radio (AFR), which is run by the extreme anti-LGBT group American Family Association (AFA), which allows all manner of bigotry on its airwaves, particularly from Bryan Fischer. Apparently, calling for the shooting of university officials was a little too extreme even for them.
In a Facebook statement, AFR announced that “The fill-in host on AFR who made those comments is no longer on the air with us and will not be filling in on AFR in the future” and that the views were “un-Christian.” AFR also scrubbed Ruse’s shows from their archives (the Facebook announcement appears to have been removed, as well). Ruse finally apologized, sort of, on Friday, telling Talking Points Memo that he regretted using the expression “taken out and shot” and that it wasn’t meant to be taken literally. ( continue to full post… )
Hardball with Chris Matthews Takes FRC’s Jerry Boykin to Task for Remarks about Obama, Muslims and Jews
Last night, Hardball with Chris Matthews reserved a spot on the “clown car” for Family Research Council Executive Vice President Jerry Boykin. The segment centered on audio that we recorded of Boykin speaking on a “hot mic” at a far-right conference.
Boykin said that President Obama supports Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood and sends them subliminal messages of support. In the same recording, which we posted on YouTube, Boykin awkwardly joked with an Israeli reporter that “Jews are the problem” and the “cause of all the problems in the world.”
Boykin is a retired Army Lt. Gen. and served as Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence under President George W. Bush. His career was derailed by his anti-Muslim advocacy, culminating in a public rebuke by President Bush and a Pentagon investigation that determined he had violated military rules. In the years since, Boykin has established himself as a leading Muslim-basher and conspiracy theorist.
Watch Matthews and his guests, Salon.com editor Joan Walsh and Michelle Bernard of the Bernard Center, take Boykin and the Family Research Council to task:
The Family Research Council’s executive vice president, Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin (retired), was caught on a “hot mic” following a panel yesterday at the National Security Action Summit, which was held just down the street from the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). Boykin could be heard, in an awkward attempt at humor, telling a reporter from Israel that “Jews are the problem” and the “cause of all the problems in the world.” Boykin told another reporter that President Obama identifies with and supports Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood and uses subliminal messages to express this support.
Boykin appeared on a panel yesterday – “Benghazigate: The Ugly Truth and the Cover-up” – as part of the summit held near Washington, DC, which was organized by Frank Gaffney to highlight speakers, like himself, who were not invited to speak at CPAC. Gaffney has alienated himself by repeatedly claiming that the American Conservative Union, which organizes CPAC, has ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. Boykin, who is FRC’s second in command after Tony Perkins, fits right in at such a gathering.
After the Benghazi panel came to a close, the video feed for the live webcast went dark but audio continued to be broadcast. Boykin could be heard speaking with two reporters. His first conversation concerned Obama’s supposed support for Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood.
Boykin said that Obama’s “first real public appearance overseas was in Cairo,” and dubbed that the “notorious apology tour.” “If you understand anything about Islam,” he continued, “there are subliminal messages.” Obama’s message to them is “I understand you and I support you.”
Boykin argued that “Al Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood and everybody else” are taking advantage of this support and the “opportunity that they see that they have a president that identifies with them, that has been supportive of them inside the United States and is unwilling to go against them.”
Boykin could be heard recommending that the reporter contact FRC’s head of media relations, J.P. Duffy. He wrapped up that conversation and was approached by Henry Schwartz from IsraeliNationalNews.com, a right-wing Israeli news site run by Arutz Sheva.
A person, perhaps a PR flack, started to ask Boykin, “Would you mind doing a two minute interview with Israel, Israel National News?” (sic). Boykin cut in with “the Jews are the problem, the Jews are the cause of all the problems in the world.” The same person, or perhaps Schwartz, could be heard laughing and said “I know, I know, that’s why we’re trying to fix everything.” Watch:
Now that former Congressman Bob Beauprez has officially entered the race for the Republican nomination for governor in Colorado, his long record as a rabble-rousing conservative is being closely examined. This week an old video he recorded in 2012 resurfaced at ColoradoPols.com, showing Beauprez contemplating the possibility that Americans might turn to violent revolt against the Obama administration.
The observations came in an interview with Perry Atkinson of The Dove TV program Focus Today, recorded July 31, 2012. Beauprez and Atkinson were discussing the alleged dangers of American participation in various United Nations treaties “that potentially would allow Iran to disarm Americans.” Watch:
ATKINSON: You know Congressman, this, this, I don’t even like going down this road, but if this saw the light of day, and God forbid that it would, but if this saw the light of day, wouldn’t this be a modern-day civil war in this country?
BEAUPREZ: Well, some are wondering what will be the, the line that gets crossed eventually, where, where people actually rise up and say enough. I mean, our founding documents refer to it, that people have every right, a free people have every right, that when government becomes too obtrusive, too obsessive, too overwhelming, and infringes on their individual liberty and freedom, free people have the right to overthrow that government and establish a new one.
I hope and pray that, that we don’t see another revolution in this country. I hope and pray we don’t see another civil war, but this administration is pushing the boundaries like none I think we’ve ever, ever seen.
The treaty they are discussing, the proposed Arms Trade Treaty, is the focus of numerous far-right conspiracy theories, particularly among John Birch Society adherents and like-minded anti-government “Patriots”.
Beauprez, who campaigns as a “Tea Party” conservative these days, is no stranger to controversy. During his 2006 bid for the governorship (a race he eventually lost to Democrat Bill Ritter by a 17-point margin), he claimed during a debate that “as high as 70 percent, maybe even more” of African-American women’s pregnancies end in abortion, a remark for which he later apologized. Also, his campaign was briefly embroiled in a controversy involving the misuse of a national criminal database for ads targeting Ritter.
Evangelical crusader Scott Lively, who is credited with inspiring anti-gay legislation in both Uganda and Russia, was interviewed last week on National Public Radio’s “Tell Me More” program by host Michel Martin to discuss Uganda’s harsh new statute outlawing homosexuality. The interview, which lasted over 10 minutes, included the usual doses of Lively’s incendiary rhetoric, including his assertion that “sodomy is not a human right.”
Lively also justified anti-gay discrimination by comparing it to other forms of bigotry: “Gender, race, ethnicity – these are all morally neutral. But homosexuality is – involves voluntary sexual conduct with serious public health, social, sociological implications. It’s not irrational to discriminate on that basis.”
The interview sparked a strong negative reaction from NPR listeners, who took to social media such as Facebook and Twitter to chastise the network and Martin for broadcasting the interview. Among them was Ted Allen of the Food Network, who commented: “Can’t believe ears: Why is @NPR legitimizing anti-gay Scott Lively on @TellMeMoreNPR?!”
Others commented at NPR’s website, chastising NPR along similar lines: “Real people are dying because of this man’s work. I am offended by this man’s hate-speech. Truly offended. Why give him a platform for his propaganda? Why not the Westboro Baptist Church? Or the White Rights movement?”
Martin and editor Amita Parashar Kelly responded on-air Monday: “Now of course, we’ve thought about those questions,” said Kelly. “But our mission is to bring listeners stories that affect people’s lives. And we know that what Pastor Lively says is offensive to a lot of people. But the fact is that he has a huge reach around the world. People in Uganda are listening to him, and Uganda’s parliament is listening. So we wanted to hear what he had to say.” ( continue to full post… )
A week ago today, I went on CNN’s “Erin Burnett OutFront” show, where I was asked if anti-black racism was on the rise. I answered in what seemed to me a calm way, relying on actual research rather than offering a mere opinion.
“I think the best data shows that in fact anti-black racism has risen over the last four or five years,” I told Burnett, according to her website. “There’s polling that shows that both implicit and explicit anti-black attitudes among American whites have gone up quite significantly between 2008 and 2012, to the point where now more than half of white Americans have these anti-black attitudes.”
Over at Fox News, that didn’t go over so well with Bill O’Reilly. Here’s what O’Reilly said on “The O’Reilly Factor” the very next day, according to an E-mail his producer just sent me with the “official” transcript of the show: “No, it’s simply not true, all right. We looked at the AP study that Mr. Potok cited and it’s not even close to being true. So, we suggest that Mr. Potok reread the study and stop demonizing white America for being racist because that’s insane. There are racists — every color, every creed. But to the [sic] zero in that, somehow, in America, white people are becoming more anti-black when you don’t even read the study properly. I want everybody to go to the Associated Press and punch it up, pinhead of the week, all right.” And he designated me as his “Pinhead of the Week.”
Not even close to being true? Let’s check in first with the original 2012 report from The Associated Press, which commissioned the poll that was conducted by researchers from the University of Michigan, Stanford University, and the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago.
The AP story reporting the results was headlined, “The Big Story: AP Poll: Majority harbor prejudice against blacks.” And here’s the bottom line under that unambiguous headline: “In all, 51 percent of Americans now express explicit anti-black attitudes, compared with 48 percent in a similar 2008 survey. When measured by an implicit racial attitudes test, the number of Americans with anti-black sentiments jumped to 56 percent, up from 49 percent during the last presidential election.”
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Ted Nugent, the metal guitarist-turned-hunting-aficionado, has been in the news a lot lately – and not in a good way. His former friends in the conservative and mainstream media who had smiled and turned a blind eye to his extreme rhetoric over the years finally seemed to reach their limit this week after Nugent’s shtick descended into outrageously racist remarks attacking President Obama. That in turn was followed by a series of increasingly bizarre media appearances by Nugent in which he made outrageous claims and exhibited a strange and twisted worldview.
Of course, none of this is really news to people who have followed Nugent for long: he has a long track record of extremist rhetoric and behavior, often violent and outrageous in nature. The more pertinent question, perhaps, is why it took this long for everyone else to figure it out.
The most recent explosion of nuttiness surrounding Nugent revolved around an interview he gave in January to Guns.com at a gun-industry trade show, when he called President Obama a “subhuman mongrel” who should tried for treason:
NUGENT: I have obviously failed to galvanize and prod, if not shame enough Americans to be ever vigilant not to let a Chicago communist raised communist educated communist nurtured subhuman mongrel like the ACORN community organizer gangster Barack Hussein Obama to weasel his way into the top office of authority in the United States of America. I am heartbroken but I am not giving up. I think America will be America again when Barack Obama, [Attorney General] Eric Holder, Hillary Clinton, [Sen.] Dick Durbin, [former New York City Mayor] Michael Bloomberg and all of the liberal Democrats are in jail facing the just due punishment that their treasonous acts are clearly apparent.
He went on to also refer to Obama as a “chimpanzee”.
The issue might have just festered and gradually died away were it not for Nugent’s busy schedule campaigning on behalf of a number of Tea Party-oriented Republican candidates, notably Texas gubernatorial hopeful Greg Abbott. After Nugent made campaign appearances on his behalf, Abbott’s campaign began facing questions about Nugent’s recent remarks. The Abbott campaign released a statement distancing itself from Nugent. The issue reached a head when CNN’s Wolf Blitzer interviewed Abbott and asked him about Nugent. ( continue to full post… )
Railing fervently against the “hybreeds” spawned by God-defying, racially mixed marriages, Pastor Donny Reagan of Tennessee’s Happy Valley Church of Jesus Christ doesn’t look very happy on a widely circulated Internet video that comes across like a relic from some 1950s archive.
The pastor minces no words in his sermon: “What white woman would want her baby to be a mulatto by a colored man?” As for the black man who has children with a white woman: “He don’t want them to look like him, so he’ll marry with another.” Lest this sound racist, Reagan adds helpfully, “Some of the finest people I ever met in my life was some of them colored people.”
But this sermon isn’t from the bad old times; it was recorded just last year in Reagan’s 600-member Johnson City, Tenn., church. What’s more, the pastor is not unique in translating the theology of William Branham, a breakaway Pentecostal religious leader, into a “no-exceptions” Biblical ban on interracial marriage. Branham-based churches are scattered across the U.S. They may not all embrace the racial separation extolled by Reagan, but the Branham theology invites racism, says James Walker, president of The Watchman Fellowship, an Arlington, Texas, evangelical ministry that researches cults and new religious movements. ( continue to full post… )
For the anti-gay movement, call it the gift that keeps on giving. The thoroughly discredited study by University of Texas sociology professor Mark Regnerus that was released July 2012 has turned up yet again, this time in the initial brief filed on behalf of the state of Utah in its fight against marriage equality. A federal judge ruled in December that Utah’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. The Supreme Court granted a stay in January, and the lawsuit is currently wending its way through the appeals process.
The brief, filed by the state’s legal team late last night (beating the deadline by 30 minutes), suggests that children will somehow be endangered by marriage equality, and the Regnerus study is supposed to lend credence to the false claim that children raised in same-sex households fare worse in many ways than in households with opposite-sex couples.
However, Regnerus’ data does not support that conclusion, as he himself has admitted. Hundreds of sociologists have noted the study’s flawed methodology while the American Sociological Association slammed the study in a March 2013 amicus brief filed with the Supreme Court. Meanwhile, documents obtained by the American Independent suggest that Regnerus was recruited to conduct the study in order to use its findings to influence possible Supreme Court decisions regarding marriage equality and in fact may also have been coached about how to discuss the study publicly. ( continue to full post… )