- The Washington Times - Friday, March 29, 2019

The Southern Poverty Law Center has made big bucks over the years by labeling conservative organizations tools of hate and extremism.

Now the finger-pointing has turned inward.

The SPCL is under fire, facing multiple accusations of racism and sexual harassment. The founder, Morris Dees, has been abruptly fired; the president, Richard Cohen, and legal director, Rhonda Brownstein, have suddenly resigned.

According to The New York Times, employees with the organization wrote to SPLC leaders, detailing “allegations of mistreatment, sexual harassment, gender discrimination and racism” that “threaten the moral authority” and the “integrity” of SPLC’s mission.

My, how the hypocrisy flows.

This is the same group that labeled the Family Research Council — the pro-traditional family Family Research Council! — a hate group. This is the same group that called out Ben Carson, pediatric surgeon-turned-politician, an extremist. This is the same group that has been trying to shutter conservative speech for years by tossing out hate tags and unfairly affixing extremist labels — and that continues, to this day, to work with social media to shutter conservative speech.

Well, well, well. The SPLC is now trying to do damage control on its own uncomfortable turn in scandal’s light. The mighty and arrogant do fall, don’t they?

After employees sent the first letter, more employees came forward and sent a second letter, saying the SPLC’s leadership staff had been “complicit in decades of racial discrimination, gender discrimination and sexual harassment and/or assault,” The Times reported.

And one former SPLC staffer wrote in an aptly titled “Reckoning” piece in the New Yorker: “The work [at the SPLC] could be meaningful and gratifying. But it was hard, for many of us, not to feel like we’d become pawns in what was, in many respects, a highly profitable scam.”

Heck, conservatives could’ve told you that years ago. In fact, conservatives have been saying that for years.

Hypocrisy, apparently, has a way of translating a message that conservative lips don’t. Reckoning, indeed.

• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com or on Twitter, @ckchumley.

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