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The Great Smoky Mountain Journal

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Posted: Sunday, January 21, 2018 06:32 PM

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Newsweek Calls Values Voter Summit "Hate Group"

Newsweek has labeled the Family Research Council's Values Voter Summit a "hate group" in a headline published in advance of President Trump's speech there.

The online story that appeared Thursday was headlined, “Donald Trump to speak at hate group’s annual event, a first for a president.” It doesn’t explain who actually labeled it as a hate group until the third paragraph.

Newsweek cites the Southern Poverty Law Center as the organization that deemed the Family Research Council a “hate group,” but the SPLC doesn’t exactly have the best reputation itself. The group claims to fight “hate and bigotry” and seeks “justice for the most vulnerable members of society.”

However, many critics say the group’s methodology for labeling a group or person as “extremist” in unclear and the Pentagon recently severed all ties to the group, according to the Daily Caller.

"This vile group claims to be expert on hate, but that's only because it promotes hatred of conservatives and Christian groups."
- Media Research Center Vice President Dan Gainor
“There's absolutely nothing legitimate about the Southern Poverty Law Center's so-called hate list. This vile group claims to be expert on hate, but that's only because it promotes hatred of conservatives and Christian groups,” Media Research Center Vice President Dan Gainor told Fox News.

Earlier this month, the Daily Caller obtained emails that show the Department of Defense Office of Diversity Management and Equal Opportunity “removed any and all references” to the SPLC from its training materials. The SPLC has also been under fire from conservative organizations, and a Christian ministry group based in Florida sued the SPLC last Summer after it labeled the ministry as a hate group.

The Patriot Post calls the SPLC “the anti-hate group that is a hate group” and labeled it as “un-American” in a story that specifically questions why the media continues to quote them – which is exactly what Newsweek did with its headline.

“The next time you see the Southern Poverty Law Center quoted in the news, just remember: the masterminds behind the SPLC aren’t eliminating hate. They are fueling it,” the Patriot Post wrote on Friday.

It’s been a rough time for Newsweek and the magazine has issued at least 20 corrections in 2017, including at least one per month, and even has a page on its website dedicated to its mistakes. The magazine admitted to over 50 mistakes in 2016 and recently issued an embarrassing retraction about a story that falsely detailed the life of the Las Vegas shooter's girlfriend with salacious information that turned out to be fake news.

Citing public records, the original story claimed Stephen Paddock's girlfriend, Marilou Danley, had used two social security accounts and had two husbands at the same time. The now-retracted story said that Danley is the “one person who holds the key to solving the mystery” of the deadliest mass shooting in American history. Newsweek painted her as “a shadowy figure with a convoluted life of her own,” who lived “an unconventional life.”

Unfortunately for Newsweek, the initial report was based on the marriage record of Danley, who was known under a different name when she married Geary Danley in Clark County, Nevada, according to the magazine.

Gainor mocked Newsweek for promoting SPLC’s “garbage” and brought up the 2010 sale of the magazine when Dr. Sidney Harman only had to spend $1 to acquire it because the publication came with so many financial liabilities.

“It's hard to imagine a publication that sold for $1 going down in value, but it has,” Gainor said.