Collusion: Rhode Island school district sends 8,800 pages of emails to SPLC, docs show

(The Daily Signal) – When concerned mom Nicole Solas requested all emails from her Rhode Island school district to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the request turned up more than 8,000 pages of…

(The Daily Signal) – When concerned mom Nicole Solas requested all emails from her Rhode Island school district to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the request turned up more than 8,000 pages of communications, and the district told her it would cost $6,629.25 for it to process the SPLC documents.

A brief refresher: The SPLC began as a civil rights nonprofit, but has morphed into a far-left fundraising machine and smear factory. As I wrote in my book, “Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center,” it weaponized its history of suing KKK groups into bankruptcy to smear its political and ideological opponents, placing mainstream conservative and Christian groups on a “hate map” alongside Klan chapters.

Solas, a Rhode Island mother, had briefly enrolled her daughter in kindergarten in the South Kingstown School District. She withdrew her daughter after the school district sued her on account of Solas’ multiple public records requests to reveal whether the district taught kids the principles of critical race theory, a lens that teaches kids to view white people as oppressors and black people as oppressed.

Solas told The Daily Signal that she requested “emails sent by [South Kingstown School District] employees” to “weed out spam emails automatically sent by SPLC to schools.”

The SPLC runs an education program long known as “Teaching Tolerance.” In 2021, after the George Floyd riots in Minneapolis, the SPLC apparently decided that “tolerance” wasn’t woke enough, so it rebranded the program to “Learning for Justice.” The program has advocated for lessons that inculcate critical race theory, transgender identity, and pornographic books in schools. Last year, the SPLC added parental rights groups, including Moms for Liberty, to its “hate map,” in part demonizing those groups for opposing sexually explicit books in school libraries.

The SPLC has bragged that it sent “over 400,000 educators” the “Teaching Tolerance” magazine, “reaching nearly every school in the country.” This language disappeared from the website, however, as more Americans look critically at the SPLC.

The SPLC hides its radical agenda behind benign-sounding initiatives such as celebrating diversity and inclusion. Many on the Left have adopted its rhetoric.

The SPLC’s “hate map” has caused real-world harm. In 2012, a terrorist targeted the Family Research Council for a mass shooting using the “hate map.” He told the FBI he aimed to kill everyone in the building, but the building manager prevented the slaughter, in the process sustaining bullet wounds. The shooter pleaded guilty to terrorism charges and is currently serving a 25-year prison sentence.

Early in the 2000s, the SPLC began branding some activist groups that opposed illegal immigration “anti-immigrant hate groups” and putting them on the “hate map.” The SPLC maintains that hatred drives the movement calling for the enforcement of immigration laws, even as the Biden administration sets new records for the number of illegal aliens encountered at the southern border.

In the past two weeks, the SPLC has demonized Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, a Republican, for attempting to close the border when the Biden administration refuses to do so. Abbott is attempting to enforce federal laws that President Joe Biden will not enforce, yet the SPLC claims Abbott is seeking to establish “state supremacy over the border.”

The SPLC noted Abbott’s attempts to install razor wire between Shelby Park in Eagle Pass, Texas, and the southern border, the Biden administration’s decision to cut the wire, and the Supreme Court ruling allowing the Biden administration access.

“This is part of Abbott’s broader anti-immigrant agenda, which includes an attempt to stop a supposed ‘invasion’ of Texas by migrants,” SPLC’s Caleb Kieffer and Rachel Goldwasser wrote. “Claims of ‘invasion’ have become a trope among right-wing lawmakers and the hard right despite dangerous similarities to the racist ‘great replacement’ conspiracy theory.”

The SPLC did not acknowledge that border agents encountered a record 3.2 million illegal aliens in fiscal year 2023 (a number larger than the combined populations of Hawaii, Alaska, and Vermont), nor that Democratic mayors are requesting help to deal with the large numbers of aliens in the country. This isn’t a “great replacement conspiracy theory”; it is a blatantly obvious fact that millions of illegal aliens are taking root in the U.S., and the SPLC’s move to dismiss critics as racist in the face of that fact should set off alarm bells across America.

The SPLC also demonized the effort to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas for failing to enforce immigration law and prevent mass hordes of aliens from entering the country. In an article focused on a militia group’s efforts to take border enforcement into its own hands, Goldwasser claims the militia’s action represents “a product of the anti-immigrant environment produced by the xenophobic posturing of hate groups and politicians, and the controversial impeachment of Alejandro Mayorkas, the first Latinx and immigrant to lead the Department of Homeland Security.”

Goldwasser suggested that Mayorkas faces an impeachment effort not because he has failed to enforce immigration law and prevent the border crisis, but because he is the first Latino to head the Department of Homeland Security. She used “Latinx,” a transgender neologism, in order to avoid the clear masculine ending in Spanish for “Latino.”

The SPLC did not reserve all its vitriol for Republicans, however. Kieffer and Goldwasser noted that Biden has supported a Senate bill that included minor border security measures and changes to the asylum process in exchange for funding to Ukraine in its defense against Russia’s invasion.

“The bill worried immigration advocates, who viewed it as being extremely harsh and out of step for the needs of border communities,” they wrote. “The Senate relief package debacle shows the same anti-immigrant animus undergirding impeachment of Mayorkas and the standoff in Eagle Pass.”

It seems the SPLC’s partisan attacks against pro-enforcement groups have so unmoored the organization from reality that it is unwilling to accept the blatantly obvious truth. Recent polls have showed former President Donald Trump, who currently leads in the Republican presidential nominating proces, ahead of Biden in key swing states. Americans give Biden poor marks on the border, which helps explain the president’s belated support for some immigration restrictions. Biden knows he has to make up ground on this issue, and he’s furiously working to make it seem like the border crisis is Republicans’ fault.

Yet the SPLC hasn’t gotten the memo. It’s so focused on branding as “hateful” anyone who dares to speak the plain truth about the border crisis that it turns against Biden, the very president the SPLC brags about influencing and with whom SPLC leaders have met at least six times personally.

The SPLC’s radical agenda of critical race theory, transgender lessons, and apparent hatred for the very idea of national borders has no place in America’s classrooms. Solas is right to demand answers from her Rhode Island school district, and parents across the country should be on the lookout for the SPLC’s influence in schools.