News

SPLC to RNC Members: Don’t participate in hate group-sponsored trip to Israel

The SPLC has urged the 168 members of the Republican National Committee not to participate in a weeklong, all-expenses-paid trip to Israel sponsored by the American Family Association and the American Renewal Project.  

The SPLC has urged the 168 members of the Republican National Committee not to participate in a weeklong, all-expenses-paid trip to Israel sponsored by the American Family Association (AFA) and the American Renewal Project (ARP), an organization financed by the AFA and housed within its office.

According to an invitation sent by RNC Chairman Reince Preibus, the groups invited all RNC members to participate in the trip scheduled for Jan. 31-Feb. 8.

In a letter sent yesterday to RNC offices across the country, SPLC President Richard Cohen reminded RNC members of the AFA’s extremism and its demonizing attacks on minorities.

“Given the AFA’s public statements – including the false contention that gay men were responsible for the Holocaust, an idea undoubtedly offensive to Israelis – political leaders should not lend the prestige of their office to this event or to this organization,” Cohen wrote.

The AFA has been labeled a hate group by the SPLC since 2010 due to its persistent use of falsehoods to demonize the LGBT community.

The letter cites the following examples of the AFA’s defamatory attacks against the LGBT community, Jews and other minorities:

  • Bryan Fischer, who serves as the AFA’s spokesman and director of issue analysis, has suggested that Jews are second-class citizens – that “we are a Christian nation, and not a Jewish or Muslim one.”  He has further argued that the First Amendment applies only to Christians.
  • Fischer has also written: “Homosexuality gave us Adolph Hitler, and homosexuals in the military gave us the Brown Shirts, the Nazi war machine and 6 million dead Jews.” Fischer also promotes the views of those who endorse Uganda’s “kill the gays” bill. 
  • Fischer has also said that African Americans “rut like rabbits” and has argued that women have no place in politics or the military. He has also claimed that Hispanics are “socialists by nature” and come to the U.S. to “plunder” the country.

“Given that the disease of anti-Semitism is flaring throughout the world, we certainly understand your desire to show your commitment to Israel at this time,” Cohen wrote to RNC members. “But accepting funding from an extremist group like the AFA would make a mockery of that commitment and legitimize its extremism.”

CLICK ON THE LETTER TO DOWNLOAD [PDF]