Christian Right Insiders Reveal Racism, Virulent Anti-Immigrant Attitudes and Homophobia in Prominent Religious Group
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In the newsroom, said Martin, "I saw the tone of stories develop in a way I thought was disturbing."
"They get people as news sources to say what they want to say but can't say," he added.
After Obama got elected, said Martin, "this went up to a whole new level, we have to vilify this man."
Questioning Authority = "Attitude Problems"
In 2008, Jackson sent Martin an email with the subject line "attitude problems," citing scripture he said governed "a worker's attitude toward their [sic] superiors." The verses he cited included Ephesians 6:5-8 ("Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, singleness of your heart, as unto Christ") and Colossians 3:22-25 ("Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God.") He closed the email with a "final warning" that "any further breaches in this area will be turned over to Brother Don."
Among the topics about which Martin had raised concerns was the news room's approach to immigration. Martin said that Groening has, for example, called undocumented immigrants "stupid," "scumbag lawbreakers" and "freeloaders." Groening believed that illegal immigration would "destroy" the country, and that "we have the best way of life, and if our borders aren't secured, this country would be destroyed."
Martin also noted that Groening had referred to Muslims as "raghead scumbag terrorists" and referred to Allah as "Satan."
According to him, Groening received a subscription to American Renaissance magazine at the office. American Renaissance is published by white nationalist Jared Taylor, and, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the magazine and website "regularly feature proponents of eugenics and blatant anti-black racists." Taylor's New Century Foundation, which runs the magazine, "also sponsors American Renaissance conferences every other year where racist 'intellectuals' rub shoulders with Klansmen, neo-Nazis and other white supremacists."
AFA did not respond to requests to interview Jackson and Groening.
A 2005 profile of Taylor in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette described Taylor’s beliefs that: "black people are genetically predisposed to lower IQs than whites, [and] are sexually promiscuous because of hyperactive sex drives.” The profile went on to note that, “Race-relations expert Jared Taylor keeps company with a collection of racists, racial 'separatists' and far-right extremists."
In a 2004 article for One News Now, reprinted on the American Renaissance website, Groening relied entirely on the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) for a story claiming that FAIR, which he characterized as an "immigration reform organization," had revealed purported "voter fraud" in Wisconsin that proved that "non-citizens of the United States could decide the 2004 presidential election."
FAIR, which has been designated a hate group by The Southern Poverty Law Center, is one of a network of groups founded by Michigan activist John Tanton; the SPLC describes the organized anti-immigrant movement as "almost entirely the handiwork" of Tanton. His network of groups was behind the passage of Arizona's harsh anti-immigrant law, SB 1070, and other initiatives.
The SPLC chronicled Tanton's ties to the nativist movement in a 2009 report based on his own papers, finding that:
[T]he papers in the Bentley Library show that Tanton has for decades been at the heart of the white nationalist scene. He has corresponded with Holocaust deniers, former Klan lawyers and the leading white nationalist thinkers of the era. He introduced key FAIR leaders to the president of the Pioneer Fund, a white supremacist group set up to encourage "race betterment" at a 1997 meeting at a private club. He wrote a major funder to encourage her to read the work of a radical anti-Semitic professor -- to "give you a new understanding of the Jewish outlook on life" -- and suggested that the entire FAIR board discuss the professor's theories on the Jews. He practically worshipped a principal architect of the Immigration Act of 1924 (instituting a national origin quota system and barring Asian immigration), a rabid anti-Semite whose pro-Nazi American Coalition of Patriotic Societies was indicted for sedition in 1942.