Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Best Offense: Bankrupt The Hate

Not to Equate FOTF with the KKK, but...

Just how much money does it cost to hate someone? Hate groups large and small - all of them - have bills to pay. From printing fliers at Kinko's, to slick commercials with actors talking ominously about a "coming storm," groups trying desperately to discriminate against someone have to pay money that could be put to better use. Most groups fostering discrimination depend upon the kindness of their members for donations and budget accordingly. Unexpected expenditures, however, can be ruinous.

Just ask Ron Edwards of the IKA - Imperial Klans of America.

The Southern Poverty Law Center launched a suit against them for their brutal assault of a teenager at a Kentucky county fair. The jury awarded the SPLC and their client $2.5 million. (See video below)

Looks like Kinko's won't be getting the IKA's business for a while.

On to other groups not as violent, but more powerful. James Dobson's Focus On The Family is evidently losing money.

Silver lining of the recession:
Focus on the Family is broke

Monday, August 10, 2009 at 2:03:00 PM EDT
These are hard economic times. Jobs are scarce, health insurance rates are skyrocketing, and many companies and organizations are hemorrhaging money.
Fortunately, one of those organizations is Focus on the Family. Here's a letter I received in the mail this weekend:
"Right now we're facing a serious budget shortfall that threatens our ability to reach out to parents, families and married couples who count on our help. Income is down nearly $6 million from what we expected and planned for this year."
$6 million!! Will Dr. Dobson have to sell his "special" pink velour sports jacket, the one he wears EVERY Christmas and has displayed behind glass (of course!) at the FOTF Center?

Hardly. Focus On The Family's income is approximately $180 million per year. But thank you, Joe, for pointing out that FOTF feels threatened financially. That feeling - of financially shaky ground - should continue for a long time. Now, it might be unseemly to wish anyone financial ruin, but there are certainly worse ways to wage a war. Dobson has declared war on America's progressives for over three decades, surviving most battles with its armaments: the Bible ...and money.

Ditto the Mormon Church (LDS)

But sooner or later, the money has to run out. Debts have to be paid. And in tough economic times, fewer corporations are able to donate or give "in kind" services. How many Prop 8 battles will there be before LDS members say "Enough! We're not made of money!" Another view: while the Catholic Church was also tied to Prop 8, it was for far less an amount ($3 million) than LDS ($30 million).Perhaps $1 billion in child abuse lawsuit payouts had something to do with that. Fifteen years ago, they could have given far more financial support to "save" marriage.

DinsoauradvenenenEven the support for "Creationism" is losing money: seeing dinosaurs romp with Adam and Eve is no longer on the "to do" list for the Christian family. Kentucky's famous Creation Museum (Answers In Genesis Foundation) is battling creditors and the Dinosaur Adventure Land*, a creationist theme park in Florida, has closed its doors.

the Pensacola News Journal:

[Kent Hovind] was found guilty in November 2006 on 58 counts, including failure to pay employee taxes and making threats against investigators.

The conviction culminated 17 years of Hovind sparring with the IRS. Saying he was employed by God and his ministers were not subject to payroll taxes, he claimed no income or property.

Does it take money to make hate groups and Christofascists lose money? Some money, yes, but not quite as much as people think. As the situation with Southern Poverty Law Center proves, courage and tenacity are just as necessary as lawyers' fees. Keeping the battles going, speaking out, protesting, emphasizing (and, yes, publicizing) every death, every bashing, every form of discrimination will keep them spending money in their defense.

Okay, so what's the tie-in? So these groups are losing money. Will their bankruptcies help win the culture war and stop the hate, stop the discrimination, stop them from proselytizing against us?

Maybe. Just remember: when it comes to money, anything's possible.

* Wikipedia: Kent E. Hovind (born January 15, 1953) is an American Young Earth creationist and conspiracy theorist famous for his creation science seminars that aim to convince listeners to reject modern theories of evolution, geophysics, and cosmology in favor of biblical creation. Hovind's views are criticized by the scientific community at large and even some fellow Young Earth creationist organizations like Answers in Genesis.

No comments: