The Southern Poverty Law (SPLC) is a leftist hate group. It smears individuals and groups it differs with by labeling them “racist,” “white supremacist,” “extremist,” and the like.
Now the SPLC has placed an article about PragerU on its “Hatewatch” blog. It never actually accuses PragerU of “hate” because even it can’t substantiate such a charge. In over 300 videos, it could not find a single sentence countenancing hate or bigotry, so it simply describes two articles by outsiders about PragerU, knowing the dirty work will be accomplished via implication.
The article is about two PragerU critics, Kevin M. Kruse, a Princeton history professor, and a self-described sociologist named Francesca Tripodi, who wrote an article examining PragerU’s reach.
The article charges that “more than a few” PragerU videos “function as dog whistles to the extreme right.” How does PragerU blow these “dog whistles”?
The article uses Tripodi to make its case. Here is the essence of her argument, as described by the SPLC: “Tripodi says she discovered several elements tied to PragerU’s presenters and its online marketing that paint the brief videos watched more than a billion times in a troublesome light.”
And what are those “several elements?”
“To start with,” the article says, “when one visits the PragerU channel on YouTube, there is a column of ‘Related Channels’ with links to other outlets PragerU’s audience may find interesting: Fox News seems to be a no-brainer, as does The Daily Wire, given its founder Ben Shapiro’s relationship as a presenter for PragerU. But alongside those you also can find the channel of Stefan Molyneux, an extremist who espouses pseudo-scientific ‘race realism’ propaganda.
“‘(PragerU) … is very blatantly algorithmically connected’ to the extreme right content found on YouTube, Tripodi explains.”
Only a very careful reader will discern that PragerU has never had any connection whatsoever to Molyneux or any “extreme right content.” All Tripodi and the SPLC could write is that Google has “algorithmically connected” PragerU to such content. Needless to say, PragerU has no power over how Google algorithmically connects anything.
Then the SPLC writes, “More troubling, Tripodi discovered, are the connections some PragerU presenters have with white nationalist thinkers.” Again, only a very careful reader will realize PragerU has no connections whatsoever to white nationalist thinkers. Rather, “some PragerU presenters” do.
And who might they be? Tripodi and the SPLC give one example: Dave Rubin. Dave Rubin made a video for PragerU titled “Why I Left the Left.” He is a very popular liberal video podcaster, and the fact that he is a homosexual Jewish liberal who left the left disturbs the SPLC.
Now, do you know any homosexual Jewish liberals who support white nationalists? I doubt it. So, on what grounds is Rubin smeared in this way? Not because of any views he espouses but because he has interviewed the aforementioned Stefan Molyneux.
As it happens, I differ with some of the admittedly little I have seen of Molyneux’s views (for example, I believe the entire race and IQ issue is utterly pointless and, on occasion, racist). But how does the fact that one PragerU presenter interviewed someone he disagrees with in any way impugn him – let alone PragerU?
Of course, it doesn’t. But that doesn’t stop the SPLC hate site from drawing such tenuous “connections” to smear fine people.
Would George Will, Bret Stephens, Charles Krauthammer – all Pulitzer Prize winners – Alan Dershowitz (a lifelong Democrat and Hillary Clinton supporter), Arthur Brooks, Jonah Goldberg, Bjorn Lomborg, UCLA psychiatrist Dr. Stephen Marmer, former White House Press Secretary Dana Perino, and Rabbi Joseph Telushkin, to name just some of our presenters, participate in a white supremacist endeavor? The implication is absurd – and libelous.
In addition to videos on current political issues, history and economics, PragerU brings goodness and kindness into millions of people’s lives. It produces videos on forgiveness, refraining from gossip, raising grateful and kind children, marriage, God and suffering, happiness and the importance of gratitude, among many other subjects. And these have been viewed by tens of millions of people – most of them under the age of 35.
On any given day, PragerU increases goodness and kindness on earth while the Southern Poverty Law Center increases anger and resentment.
That’s why the SPLC hates PragerU. The bad hate the good. It’s a rule of life.