Friday, March 11, 2011


Thursday, March 10th, was a dark and dreary, depressive day Not only was it windy, rainy, and cold but my ancient alma mater for the second time this year managed to blow in the last 90 seconds a 7plus point lead to the same team and lose in overtime.

However it was several items in today's the mail that triggered this remembrance for March and why there is an interrelationship.

For me there are at least three memorable events during March. Two are personal; one the birth of my second daughter who when I returned from the ETO 10 months later, I saw for the first time . The second was on the 25th and I shall mention that later this month.

However, the third event should be meaningful for all of us. That occurred 46 years ago has and has changed all our lives for the better. The following excerpt is from a government publication: "The Selma-to-Montgomery March for voting rights ended three weeks--and three events--that represented the political and emotional peak of the modern civil rights movement. On "Bloody Sunday," March 7, 1965, some 600 civil rights marchers headed east out of Selma on U.S. Route 80. They got only as far as the Edmund Pettus Bridge six blocks away, where state and local lawmen attacked them with billy clubs and tear gas and drove them back into Selma. Two days later on March 9, Martin Luther King, Jr., led a "symbolic" march to the bridge. Then civil rights leaders sought court protection for a third, full-scale march from Selma to the state capitol in Montgomery. Federal District Court Judge Frank M. Johnson, Jr., weighed the right of mobility against the right to march and ruled in favor of the demonstrators. "The law is clear that the right to petition one's government for the redress of grievances may be exercised in large groups...," said Judge Johnson, "and these rights may be exercised by marching, even along public highways." On Sunday, March 21, about 3,200 marchers set out for Montgomery, walking 12 miles a day and sleeping in fields. By the time they reached the capitol on Thursday, March 25, they were 25,000-strong. Less than five months after the last of the three marches, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act of 1965--the best possible redress of grievances."

In the mail came an invitation to the 40th anniversary of the Southern Poverty Legal Center which will be held in April in Montgomery. About a quarter of a century ago I became aware of the SPLC and in its role in fighting hate groups at that time in the South. It has exposed the principles in many of the Ku Klux Klans including those responsible for torching the churches and the deaths of children.It has brought them to justice and has expanded its scope nationwide.

In addition SPLC has actively promote campaigns and videos teaching tolerance. Many have been made freely available to school systems and although I know that in the past the local schools have been advised of the availability of these teaching tools which would be of value in a community like Plainfield, I am unaware if they have been used.

Needless to say I have been more than a minimal supporter of SPLC all the past years. I am well aware that there are many others in Plainfield who also know and support this organizations work to preserve the constitutional rights of all Americans.

In today's mail there was also a special issue of SPLC's "Intelligence Report" devoted to the more than 1002 active identifiable "Hate Groups" in the US. They are broken down into national groups and by states. Of that number there are 47 active groups located in New Jersey some in Union,Somerset, and Middlesex Counties. communities named include Plainfield!

The classification of the groups , the national; and state numbers follow:
  • KU KLUX KLAN-............................ US;221 NJ:2
  • NEO-NAZI....................................... US:170 NJ:5
  • WHITE NATIONALIST................ US:136 NJ:4
  • RACIST SKINHEAD....................... US:136 NJ:23
  • CHRISTIAN IDENTITY ............... US:26 NJ:0 (a religion that is fundamentally racist and anti-Semitic)
  • BLACK SEPARATIST..................... US:149 NJ:12 (organizations whose ideologies includes tenets of racial based hatred)
  • NEO-CONFEDERATE.................... US:42 NJ:0 (wish to revive the racial issues of anti-bellum South)
  • GENERAL HATE.............................. US:122 NJ:1 (breakdown US)
    1. ANTI-GAY .............................. US:17
    2. ANTI-IMMIGRANT.............. US:13
    3. ANTI-MUSLIM...................... US:5
    4. HOLOCAUST DENIAL........... US8
    5. RACIST MUSIC....................... US:15 NJ:1
    7. OTHER (a mixed bag of various hatreds) US:47
This is a true cause for concern . Not included in the above lists are the "PATRIOT" and "MILITIA" groups which since the recession onset have risen from 132 to 824, and from42 to 330 respectively. They ALL represent a threat to our way of life out freedom of thought, speech, liberty, and life partnerships. We must do everything we can to prevent their venom entering legislation and/ or public acceptance. It should be our duty to support organizations such as SPLC and the authorities to contain all these groups.

True leaders be they secular politicians or religious leaders of all faiths must actively denounce these groups and their hatreds, not encourage or even turn the other cheek. It is ironic that these groups all survive and are protected as long as they commit no criminal act by the very constitutional rights they would deny others.

It is disturbing that powerful politicians like Rep King would try to single out American Muslims for special attention as potential terrorists and ignore instead those groups identified above.

Terrorists can be white American origin as well as any other ethnic or religious group. The Oklahoma City bomber was not a Muslim. Nor was the recently apprehended man in Detroit with explosives outside a mosque, or the unknown who planted a bomb along the MLK parade route in Spokane. The mentally affected man who shot Rep.Gifford and killed six others including a young girl was influenced by the radical rhetoric. These are the ones that must be neutralized by exposure.


  1. I am really disappointed and surprised at you and the SPLC for leaving out the Narco Terrorist groups such as Bloods,Crips,MS13,LatinKings,Russian Mafia,Mexican Mafia, Aryan Brotherhood to name but a few that hold our neighborhoods hostage

  2. 1:17 pm, The data I posted is from SPLC's document. The gangs you list while a danger to society are more criminal in motivation and not dedicated to eliminate or deprive a religious or ethnic segment of our society its civil rights.

  3. Why is being radically traditional catholic a hate crime? Isn't that like calling all orthodox jews haters?

  4. 8:03PM, The SPLC article lists the 17 organizations as a sub group under "General Hate". Since I am not familiar with any of them I can not explain other than they represent a narrow almost evangelistic movement that denounces any deviation from teachings of the early church as heresy, even in the Catholic Church and especially any form of Protestantism.

    Perhaps you can con tact SPLC for an explanation and enlighten us.Also support the work of SPLC in trying to eliminate hate.

    Orthodox Judaism does not teach hatred.They, and there are various subgroups, live according to their interpretation of the Torah's teachings. Like Christianity with various disciplines as Catholic, Baptist, Methodists,etc There are Orthodox, Conservative, Reformed,as well as Reconstruction Jews.

  5. Doc, which ones are in Plainfield?

  6. 8:46am, I would refer you to SPLC's list. The group has been out of the limelight for several years and I am not sure how active it is at present.However all these groups tend to fluctuate in numbers and agendas over years.