SPLC — North Carolina’s “Hate Groups” 2018

As part of our continuing series investigating the Southern Poverty Law Center’s “hate group” claims on a state-by-state basis, we will be having a look at the Tar Heel State of North Carolina.

As our decade-long research on the SPLC’s “hate group” methodology indicates, there is plenty of tar, and no shortage of feathers, to go around.

Our choice of North Carolina for the next installment in the series was prompted by a news story about an official proclamation passed by the Boone Town Council on August 15 of this year.  Mixed in among the 14 “Whereas’s” and pithy quotes by Einstein, Emerson and Plato, is the oft-repeated, seldom investigated, claim by the SPLC of 1,020 “hate groups” in the US for 2018.

We broke our results into three separate categories – those with confirmed physical addresses or no confirmed information whatsoever, those appearing to be online entities only (websites, blogs or vendors) and those that the SPLC has designated as “statewide.”

Before we begin, here are a few important points that need to be mentioned:

  • There is no legal or universal definition for “hate group”
  • The SPLC is the sole arbitrator of the lucrative “hate group” label, based on its own intentionally broad definition: “All hate groups attack or malign other groups.”
  • Post Office boxes or Private Mail Boxes (PMBs) are not “hate groups”
  • Web entities are not “hate groups,” even by the SPLC’s own definitions.
  • The SPLC’s “statewide” designation is meaningless, as it provides no verifiable information whatsoever that a donor or journalist could use to verify the claim. The term is therefore meaningless and all “statewide” groups are considered to be null and void. Fully 322 of the 1,020 alleged groups designated by the SPLC for 2018 are “statewide” phantoms, or one-in-three. The SPLC added 107 “statewide” groups in 2017 alone.
  • Watching the Watchdogs reviewed this list using basic web-searching techniques available to all journalists, researchers and donors. We do not imply that the results are in any way flawless, nor does this review imply advocacy or promotion of the beliefs or doctrines of any of the groups listed.
  • We welcome all corrections, comments or other verifiable information. We would especially appreciate hearing directly from the SPLC itself, as they are known to monitor this blog.

With that out of the way, onward to North Carolina!

Of the 40 alleged “hate groups” assigned to North Carolina by the SPLC for 2018, we were able to find physical addresses for 11 of them, using basic web searching techniques and verifying the results using Google Maps’ street view app.

We do not claim that this methodology is fool-proof, or necessarily the final word on the subject. It is not up to us or anyone other than the SPLC to prove that the groups they claim in their fundraising materials actually exist.

Since we know the SPLC monitors this blog, we invite and encourage them to contact us and show their work. If they have the proof in hand, how hard can it be to show it?

NC Address

North Carolina – 2018

Keen-eyed readers may notice that all 11 groups listed fall under the SPLC’s “Black Nationalist” category. In all, 19 of the 40 groups assigned to North Carolina last year are black, or nearly half the alleged total.

According to the SPLC, North Carolina’s 19 alleged Black “hate groups” outnumber all of the state’s alleged Ku Klux Klan, Neo-Confederate, Neo-Nazi, Racist Skinhead and White Nationalist groups COMBINED, and 13 out of 14 of the latter are “statewide” phantoms (versus only one alleged Black group).

As we have noted on numerous other postings, the SPLC claims that Black Nationalist groups are the largest and fastest growing category of “hate group” on its nationwide  “Hate Map” fundraising tool.

According to the SPLC, Black “hate groups” outnumber ALL of the Ku Klux Klan, neo-Confederate, neo-Nazi and Racist Skinhead “groups” on the “Hate Map” COMBINED, at 264 versus 262. Strip out the “statewide” phantoms and Black “hate groups” outnumber the other four categories combined BY THREE TO ONE, at 252 versus 82.

It turns out that 13 of North Carolina’s alleged Black “hate groups” are Black Hebrew or Black Israelite groups, whose main claim to infamy, according to the SPLC, is that they have the hate-filled audacity to “assert that black people are the biblical “chosen people” of God.”

Despite the evidence of their own numbers, the SPLC continues to claim that white “hate groups” are on the rise, a claim parroted by the Media and ultimately found in the recent Boone proclamation.

NC Website

North Carolina 2018

Next up, we have 12 groups for which no physical address could be found, or only a website or Facebook page was located. Granted, just because we were unable to find any information on these alleged groups it in no way proves that they do note exist. That being said, it’s not up to us to prove a negative.

If the SPLC has the evidence, make them produce it.

To that end, while we were not able to find a physical address for the Loyal White Knights of the KKK, we did find a recent video interview by the Charlotte Observer with three people who claim to belong to the group.

“BeaSSt Productions” would seem to be an online vendor of neo-Nazi music, but no sign of them could be found online today. Our review of other state “hate group” claims have found several cases where the accused has either moved to another state or has vanished from the Internet entirely.

With more than 300 full time employees on the payroll, nobody at the SPLC appears to have been tasked with checking on these older claims. But really, why would they? It’s not as if anyone in the Media is going to call them on it.

Last, and by all means least, we have those infamous groups for which the SPLC can provide no documentation whatsoever. Instead, the company buries them under the categorical slush fund known as “statewide.”

NC Statewide

North Carolina 2018

Since the SPLC couldn’t bother to allege a known city or town for these groups, they can be discarded out of hand. Big claims demand big proof, or any proof, for that matter.

Just for laughs, since nearly half of the alleged groups the SPLC assigned to North Carolina last year are homeless phantoms, it might be instructive to see how some of those “statewide” groups stack up nationwide.

Statewide 2018

SPLC “Statewide” groups -2018

As it turns out, 169 of the 210 alleged “hate groups” listed above are “statewide,” or 80% of the total. There are still more than 100 others on the nationwide list, but we thought it would be instructive to show in just how many cases all, or nearly all, of the alleged “groups” turn out to be unverifiable, homeless ghosts.

So there you have it. Of the 40 alleged “hate groups” assigned to North Carolina by the SPLC last year, only 11 have verifiable, physical addresses, and all of those are black “hate groups.”

In the final analysis, fully 90% of North Carolina’s alleged “hate groups” are either Black or invisible, and at least two, if not three, of the four groups remaining are websites.

The Town of Boone’s official proclamation, which cites the SPLC’s spurious claims and bemoans an alleged “rise in white nationalism” is little more than self-serving virtue signaling.

Ironically, it seems that Boone’s demographics are 94% white and less than 4% Black. Only one member of the town council is non-white.

North Carolina is only 68% white. Maybe the town council should look into its own issues of “white supremacy” and see what it can do to bring Boone out of 1919 into 2019.

That’s what the SPLC would want them to do.


Considering the Southern Poverty Law Center took in over $111 million donor-dollars in 2018 and $130 million more, based largely on these flimsy claims, some of you readers might consider reporting this to your state attorneys general as potential consumer fraud.

Watching the Watchdogs will be happy to provide any additional information upon request.

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2 Responses to “SPLC — North Carolina’s “Hate Groups” 2018”

  1. Galaxian Says:

    I dunno. Shindigs like Charlottesville get set up through social media. The permits for both rallies there were issued to an individual, Jason Kessler, in 2018 by the Nat’l Park Service because the city refused him on grounds of the previous year’s riot, and media say Kessler’s non grata among right-wingers now. Groups definitely exist, but mostly as circles of acquaintances of which few can afford rent on a business office likely to attract trouble anyway. Richard Spencer’s seems the largest at about 300 active members; his Nat’l Policy Institute and Washington Summit Publishers, both with offices, effectively comprise a single outfit SPLC lists as two hate groups.

    Nation of Islam, by contrast, operates as a church with regular meetings; so it owns or leases many more permanent structures. This may explain your results for North Carolina. SPLC trades on the public’s association of “hate group” with a onetime political party, the Nazis, and the old KKK, yet legal shops (Alliance Defending Freedom), Internet forums (Stormfront), and issue lobbies (Federation for American Immigration Reform) figure on its hate map. Implicit redefinition moots the term—a thing we also note with “terrorism,” applied to the PLO in the 1970s, to lone actors today. And given FAIR advocates low migration levels, not racism, in visa granting, SPLC designations can be patently unfair.

    Prejudicial hatred nonetheless remains a problem in the US as ideologies outlive organizations to spark killers, and the FBI does monitor certain persons or small groups it believes dangerous. As for where to donate, SPLC began with good intentions yet suffers mission creep, its bête noire, the United Klans, slain since 1987. Morris Dees’ current fundraising and use of money raise questions. Those who belong to frequently-targeted demographics may want to consider their own ethnic, racial or religious lobbies first.

  2. rkeefe57 Says:

    Thank you for your comment. You’ve hit on many truths. The SPLC still does some of the important, thankless “poverty law” work for which it was founded, but suing poor states for better prison conditions, etc., doesn’t bring in the donations.

    It wasn’t until Dees went after a Louisiana Klan group that was terrorizing Vietnamese fishermen in the late 70s that he discovered how much more lucrative “fighting hate” was than fighting for civil rights.

    “The money poured in,” according to Randall Williams, a journalist hired by Dees in 1981 to form Klanwatch, a unit of the SPLC specifically designed to promote the SPLC’s work against the Klan. In a 1988 cover story in The Progressive magazine, Williams recounted,

    “Everybody, it seems, was against the Klan. We developed a whole new donor base anchored by wealthy Jewish contributors on the East and West Coasts, and they gave big bucks.” In particular, Williams noted, “Our budget shot up tremendously—and still, we were sometimes able to raise as much as $3 million a year more than we could spend.”

    The Klan was still a “thing” in the early 80’s but was largely dying out by the end of that decade. What most people do not realize is that Morris Dees worked for the United Klans in the 1960s, in the aftermath of the brutal Klan attack on a bus carrying half a dozen terrified Freedom Riders.

    Dees’ $5,000 fee (about $44,000 in current dollars) was paid by the Klan, according to his law partner at the time, Millard Fuller, who quit Dees a few years later and founded Habitat for Humanity in the 1970s. Arguably, the Klan money was Dees’ biggest legal fee as he and Fuller closed their law office soon after to concentrate on the mail order business that made them both millionaires in their 20s.

    As we noted back in April, there is a lot more to Dees’ civil suit against the United Klans than gets mentioned by his company’s PR department. Our research indicates that Dees motivation for suing the UKA was personal and that he used the Michael Donald murder case for his own personal revenge.

    “I didn’t know whom we would sue or exactly what our theory would be, but that really didn’t matter. This was the most gruesome racially motivated murder in almost twenty years. We’d find something.”

    “One more factor motivated me: The torching of the Center had made my battle against the Ku Klux Klan personal as well as philosophical,” (“A Season for Justice,” p. 214).


    In order to exact his revenge on the UKA, Dees had to convince Donald’s 66-year-old mother to act as the plaintiff in the law suit, on his behalf. The court awarded Mrs. Donald $7 million, she collected $52,000, Dees raised over $9 million for the SPLC through fundraising campaigns featuring photos of Michal Donald’s bloated corps. Mrs. Donald never saw a dime of that money. Dees returned to his gated mansion in Montgomery after the trial, leaving Mrs. Donald in Mobile among her angry Klan neighbors.

    Beulah Mae Donald died less than a year after Dees’ revenge suit, from the stress of a second Klan trial, as even Dees admitted in his autobiography.

    There really are hateful groups and individuals in the country, nobody can deny that. The whole point of the Watching the Watchdogs blog is to investigate organizations, like the SPLC, that make millions of dollars selling fear and outrage to a largely Progressive donor base.

    When it was just a matter of Morris Dees bilking blue-haired liberals out of their donor dollars it was bad enough. Now, SPLC fundraising propaganda is turning up at the highest levels of US law-making circles and the threat to our personal liberties and freedoms is at an all-time high.

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