One of the country’s top-ranking Democrats, Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), wants Amazon to ban products from its site based on a list compiled by a group that commonly lumps Christian organizations with legitimate “hate groups.”
The left-leaning Southern Poverty Law Center has a long history of smearing Christian groups, many of which hold a traditional view of marriage and are therefore considered “anti-LGBT” by the SPLC. One Christian group, D. James Kennedy Ministries, sued the progressive watchdog last summer for slapping it with an “anti-LGBT” label, leading Amazon to block the group from participating in its charity arm, AmazonSmile.
The conservative Alliance Defending Freedom was blocked from AmazonSmile for the same reason.
In his letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Ellison, deputy chair of the Democratic National Committee, said he’s “alarmed that hate groups can make money by selling propaganda on Amazon and that Amazon is able to profit from these transactions.”
The progressive lawmaker cited a recent study titled, “Delivering Hate: How Amazon’s Platforms Are Used to Spread White Supremacy, Anti-Semitism, and Islamophobia,” which was published in July by the Action Center on Race & the Economy and the Partnership for Working Families.
Ellison asked Bezos how much money Kindle Direct Publishing has made “from the sale of materials published by SPLC-identified hate groups since 2015.”
“Will Amazon stop publishing physical and digital materials from SPLC-identified hate groups in the next three months?” he added.
While the “Delivering Hate” study certainly criticizes the sale of paraphernalia from legitimate hate groups — items with white supremacist, neo-Nazi and xenophobic messages — it also smears a Christian company, Chick Publications, known for producing gospel tracts. The SPLC labels Chick Publications a “hate group” waging a “militant, vitriolic propaganda war against anyone who doesn’t adhere to its particular brand of Christianity.”
The SPLC likewise labels the American College of Pediatricians, the Family Research Council, the Liberty Counsel and others as “hate groups.”
In June, it was reported the SPLC could soon face roughly 60 lawsuits from groups the left-leaning organization has labeled as “hate groups” and “extremist.” The consideration came after the SPLC agreed to pay Maajid Nawaz, a Muslim reformer, a whopping $3.375 million settlement after naming his group, Quilliam Foundation, in its 2016 “Field Guide to Anti-Muslim Extremists.”
Nawaz said in a statement he will continue pushing back against the “regressive left.”
“We will continue to combat extremists by defying Muslim stereotypes, calling out fundamentalism in our own communities, and speaking out against anti-Muslim hate,” he said.