First they came for the hated 'hate group'

Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Steve Jordahl (

Google headquartersGoogle and other social media companies are pledging to rid their communities of terrorists and those that inspire them, but there is concern about policing beliefs that some simply don't like. 

The threat of government persecution of Christians sent chills throughout the faith community recently when U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders confronted Russell Vought, a Trump nominee, about his orthodox views on Jesus Christ and salvation.

You wrote, 'Muslims do not know God because they rejected Jesus Christ, His Son, and they stand condemned," Sanders told Vought. "I would simply say, Mr. Chairman, that this nominee is really not someone who is what this country is supposed to be about."

Sanders' blasting of Vought's religious views sparked outrage due to the U.S. Constitution forbidding a "religious test," and there are similar concerns brewing over the First Amendment right to express views that the Left deems "hateful" or "bigoted."

Under tremendous pressure from Europe, where free speech rights are less robust than in the U.S., social media giants like Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and Twitter have agreed to sponsor a forum to discuss purging terrorists from their pages, videos and posts.

Dacus, Brad (PJI)California attorney Brad Dacus of Pacific Justice Institute was alarmed when he saw the Southern Poverty Law Center seeking a seat at the table.

Southern Poverty, he warns, is "very bigoted against Christians, against conservative organizations that have mainstream values."

An Associated Press story about the promised crackdown reports Southern Poverty has criticized Google and Facebook for "doing too little to muzzle hate groups online." 

The story goes on to state that Google has pledged to take a "tougher stance" on videos and content that don't violate its policies but "offend broad swaths of society," including religious content. 

The left-wing organization is known for documenting "hate groups" on its online "Hate Map," putting mainstream conservative groups alongside proudly racist groups such as the Ku Klux Klan.  

Mississippi-based American Family Association, the parent organization of American Family News, is listed among 18 "hate groups" in the state alongside black separatist groups and"neo-confederate groups." 

American Family Association

In the state of California, Dacus and Pacific Justice Institute are named on the "Hate Map" alongside "Golden State Skinheads," "American Nazi Party," and the "Pacific Coast Knights of the Ku Klux Clan.

The irony of Southern Poverty's Hate Map is that it nearly led to a massacre of employees at the conservative Family Research Council in 2012.

A gunman found FRC on the "Hate Map" and planned to kill the employees for their "anti-gay" views before a security guard stopped him.

Southern Poverty later denied its Hate Map was tied to the shooting - and has never apologized for the incident. 

The fear, says Dacus, is that social media groups will blur the line between the violent rhetoric of terrorists and merely unpopular thought and beliefs like those targeted by Sen. Sanders.

A spokesman for Facebook, responding to OneNewsNow, says the social media company is on the lookout for any groups that support violence or are engaged in acts of violence.  

"We are reaching a new level of open hostility and social warfare," Dacus warns.

There should be "serious concern," he adds, from conservative Americans, organizations and ministries about the impact of a left-wing crackdown on their right-wing views. 

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