Southern Poverty Law Center and Newsela: Not about poverty, law or the South

September 12, 2023

By Accuracy In Media

The only thing Southern and legal about the Southern Poverty Law Center content at Newsela is its denigration of white people in the South into a class of bigoted white supremacists.

SPLC runs Learning for Justice, a content provider used by Newsela that borrows heavily from the BLM Marxist playbook in both language and technique.

SPLC uses the now-exposed Implicit Bias Test, which AIM wrote about previously, and which use has been denounced by test creators as an abuse of the test because it can’t identify bias at an individual level.

Such use of the test shows that SPLC has a mission to teach white kids individually that they are racist so that they can indoctrinate them politically to become activists for progressive causes, which is an accurate way to describe the content goals that SPLC has for the content it shares with Newsela.  

In a content set calledDigital Tools as a Mechanism for Active Citizenship,” Newsela curated content from Learning for Justice helps students become activists by using digital tools available to teach them to go out and organize protests.

The content highlights examples of digital activism like the Arab Spring, the pan-national uprisings against dictatorships in the Middle East; and the case of Eric Garner, who was killed when a police officer put him in a chokehold for allegedly selling untaxed cigarettes.  

Garner’s death was one of the first to highlight questions about police use of force against Black Americans.

But the article that stands out the most in the set is one that SPLC uses from Cengage Learning, Inc., called “Taking it to the streets: Grassroots activism in the United States.”

The piece teaches about four important protest movements for progressives: The Civil Rights Movement, the Vietnam War protests, the protest at Kent State where National Guardsmen shot and killed four protesters, and, here’s the giveaway, Occupy Wall Street.

They neglect to mention conservative protest movements in the U.S. that were more conducive to digital media — because of recency — such as the Pro-Life protest movement and the Tea Party movement.  

One reason, perhaps, why they failed to mention conservative protest movements is because the publisher from which SPLC licensed the content, is also the publisher, through its subsidiaries Gale Asia, of the U.S. edition ofMarxism and Socialism with Chinese Characteristics,” a seminal work from China which explains the philosophy of the current Chinese communist party led by Xi Jinping.

“All party comrades should take their faith in Marxism and the socialism with Chinese characteristics as their life’s purposes,” Xi told party members in June 2021, according to Newsweek.

And as far as activism goes, this set on becoming an activist by using digital tools isn’t a one-off attempt to recruit kids into becoming progressive protestors for the Marxist-Socialist ideas of the SPLC either.

Civic Engagement and Communication as Digital Community Members” teaches kids from 6th to 8th grades how to “identify bias online.”

One of its two key learning objectives is to “Develop strategies for identifying and responding to biased language and hate in digital spaces.”

And as we can see from experience, the way kids are taught to respond to “hate” on digital media is by notifying social media monitors, who then make decisions on which speech is hateful and violent and which speech is allowed.  

Another learning set by SPLC is blatantly political, celebrating what they perceive as “Changing demographics in the U.S. [that] have the potential to change the balance of power between the Republican and Democratic parties.”

The article sets triumphantly highlight the election of Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D- Mich.), one of the socialist squad members in Congress; discourages Evangelicals from being politically involved; and writes excitedly about how the share of the Asian vote in America has risen to favor Democrats recently.

And the SPLC content set follows with this leading question as one of its “Essential Questions.”

“What obstacles to voting have been faced by various groups (e.g., women, people living in poverty, African Americans, ex-offenders, immigrants), both legally and in practice?”

Overall, these techniques are used again and again by SPLC content that builds up progressives and tear down conservatives, which of course, is the self-proclaimed goal of both the SPLC and, apparently, Mathew Gross and Newsela, who are attempting to recruit child activists one kid at a time.   


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