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Dana Milbank To Michelangelo Signorile: FRC Is Not The KKK And Therefore Not A Hate Group

DanamilbankRadio host Michelangelo Signorile invited Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank onto his show yesterday so that Milbank could discuss the controversial article in which he criticizes the Southern Poverty Law Center for labeling the anti-gay organization Family Research Council a hate group because such a label can inspire madness like the FRC shooting.

Milbank wrote at the time that it is "reckless" calling people who rabble-rouse against equality by spreading lies and vitriol a "hate group." He stuck by that story during his conversation with Signorile and tried to further emphasize his point by contrasting the FRC, which he called a "Washington think tank," with the KKK.

"The hate group category, is with the exception of the Family Research Council, a bunch of neo-Nazi and Ku Klux Klan-like groups, and while they may say all kinds of wacky things at the FRC, they’re a Washington think tank, not a group that puts on sheets and organizes lynch mobs," he said.

Reminded that "hate group" is applied to non-violent groups as well, Milbank again went for the most extreme comparison: Some [hate groups] put on white sheets and go around and lynch people and some of them don’t. It’s not the same as the KKK and Stormfront. There is a fundamental distinction. I think people who say hateful things are in one category and people who commit violent acts are in another category." Milbank also tried to bolster FRC's credibility by mentioning that it was founded by James Dobson and run for a spell by Gary Bauer, a man whose past as a failed presidential candidate somehow makes him more legitimate and wholesome.

Milbank later griped that the interview was an "ambush," but Signorile insists Milbank was informed ahead of time they would be discussing his column. "Milbank was not asked to come on the show under any false pretenses. He was invited on the show to discuss the controversial column he’d written, and he accepted the invitation," said Signorile.

Listen to the interview over at The Huffington Post.

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  1. Milbank got what he wanted- a lot of free publicity and the ability to come off as very level headed and middle of the road to people with a very superficial knowledge of what's going on. To the person without much background, yes it is obvious that there is a difference between groups like the KKK and the FRC HOWEVER the differences do not absolve FRC of their status as a hate group and Milbank's distinction is somewhat arbitrary.

    Furthermore, is he implying that if someone went in and shot some klan members for being involved with a SPLC designated hate group, that would be OK?

    Meanwhile his original argument of :hey gays, why don't you tone it down because something you might say might be used the wrong way by someone completely unbalanced to do something bad" while completely ignoring FRC doing that day in and day out the other direction is absolutely awful. Sorry bud, I don't take advice from idiots that oversimplify scenarios to win political points.

    Posted by: maddM@ | Aug 23, 2012 1:30:20 PM

  2. The SPLC gets to define their list the way they want. You can have your own list if you want, but they've probably put more effort and consideration into their list.

    Dana would have been better off making the claim that almost all public advocacy groups use misinformation to advance their agenda, which is the chief crime of the FRC, but the FRC also wants to enshrine discrimination into the law, which makes for a toxic duology of sociopathic misinformation. The KKK is dishonest about the inferiority of the black race, which they tout to support their own discrimination agenda (and lets through in Jews and Catholics too), so the comparison there is apt. When the WWF touts ridiculous claims about the decline of polar bears, it isn't quite the same thing. However, that's probably what Milbank is thinking.

    Posted by: anon | Aug 23, 2012 2:18:38 PM

  3. the fact that the only thing the FRC exists to do is promote hatred toward the LGBT communities is evidence enough.

    that's ALL they do.

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | Aug 23, 2012 3:04:32 PM

  4. Translation: "HRC only hates gays, not blacks, so it's totally OK!"

    Posted by: FuryOfFirestorm | Aug 23, 2012 3:16:51 PM

  5. So wait, you have to be explicitly violent to be hateful?

    Posted by: Gry | Aug 23, 2012 8:10:26 PM

  6. @Francis:


    Posted by: BZ | Aug 23, 2012 9:08:22 PM

  7. @Christopher Allen Horton:

    In my day "cocky gay" was called "uppity n*igger."

    Posted by: BZ | Aug 23, 2012 9:15:09 PM

  8. I agree with Dana Milbank. The FRC is a very right wing group whose social and political views are not mine but they should not be labeled a hate group.

    Posted by: andrew | Aug 23, 2012 9:51:06 PM

  9. Milbank is par and parcel of the Washington DC insiders. If a group has "think tank" beside their name, resides inside the Washington DC geographical borders and even 1 elected republican uses them for information, then it's 'legitimate.'

    These nuts live inside a very small bubble and, like any aristocracy, think their voice is the only one that counts. Challenging them is akin to rebelling, and must not be tolerated.

    Posted by: Ryan | Aug 23, 2012 10:54:06 PM

  10. FRC is a think tank? Really? There is zero thinking involved with these morons.

    Hate group is 100% accurate. Holding up the KKK as the standard for hate is putting the bar a bit high. FRC or NOM are pure bigotry and hatred with a dedication to denying civil rights = hate.

    Posted by: SoLeftImRight | Aug 23, 2012 11:57:47 PM

  11. HRC published the following on their webpage the day before the shooting at FRC:

    "The FRC has been labeled a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. It’s a group that has advocated for the criminalization of homosexuality, called for LGBT people to be exported from the U.S., and has pushed dangerous lies trying to link being gay to pedophilia."

    FRC's supporters have deemed it's "inflammatory" that the FRC's actual views are receiving a public airing.

    BTW - As the SPLC explained, FRC received the designation "because of its dissemination of false and demonizing propaganda about gays and lesbians".

    Posted by: Diogenes Arktos | Aug 24, 2012 12:07:25 PM

  12. "BZ,"

    WHY DON'T YOU CALL ME "uppity n*gger" IN BED?


    Posted by: CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON | Aug 31, 2012 6:15:03 AM

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