Activist within IRS Trying to Intimidate Conservatives?
April 23, 2012
Wintery Knight has the news: “Human Rights Campaign leaks list of pro-marriage donors and their addresses” (read the whole thing).
On March 30th, the Huffington Post published tax documents from the National Organization for Marriage.
The tax return listed the names and addresses of dozens of NOM’s major donors in 2008. All of this information is submitted to the IRS on a confidential basis and is not available for lawful public disclosure.
In an April 12th statement, NOM explains how it was able to determine that the document was leaked directly from the IRS, not by a NOM “whistleblower” (as the Huffington Post had claimed or implied).
Apparently pro-homosexuality organization the Human Rights Campaign, which had provided the tax return to the Huffington Post, immediately took it back down from the HRC Web site:
Following the release yesterday of proof by the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the source of leaked confidential donor information, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) removed from its website all reference to NOM’s un-redacted 2008 1099 tax form, which it had previously posted. . . .
“They now realize that they have done something tremendously wrong here or they would not have removed the references,” NOM President Brian Brown said today. “A felony has been committed and the Treasury Department must investigate who within the IRS has committed it, and whether people with the Obama Administration or the HRC are co-conspirators in the criminal release of our confidential tax return. . . .”
Meanwhile the Huffington Post, as of this writing, has not removed its posting.
You can read the latest from NOM filed under category: Human Rights Campaign.
Wintery Knight notes that the Human Rights Campaign fights dirty. For example, they apparently got a newspaper reporter and his wife both fired for sending the HRC a protest e-mail from the reporter’s personal e-mail account. Ironically, the e-mail he sent was in protest of the HRC’s saying that the pro-marriage side is intolerant; he told the HRC that they were the intolerant ones. His fate confirms his criticism.
Grard said he arrived at work the morning after the vote to find an e-mailed press release from the Human Rights Campaign in Washington, D.C., that blamed the outcome of the balloting on hatred of gays.
Grard, who said he’d gotten no sleep the night before, used his own e-mail to send a response. “They said the Yes-on-1 people were haters. I’m a Christian. I take offense at that,” he said. “I e-mailed them back and said basically, ‘We’re not the ones doing the hating. You’re the ones doing the hating.’
“I sent the same message in his face he sent in mine.”
. . .
According to Grard and his union . . ., he has never before had any disciplinary issues. . . .
. . . He said reporters frequently send personal e-mails from their own accounts during working hours without incurring management’s wrath.
Wintery Knight asks,
Is this some sort of poorly-funded, fringe organization like Earth First! or the Animal Liberation Front? Actually, despite the radical actions I described above, they are well-funded by mainstream corporations, who apparently endorse such tactics as normal and acceptable.
Meanwhile the other side has every reason to fear. Explaining why it’s very important that confidential donor information for the National Organization for Marriage or other pro-marriage efforts not be revealed to the public, Wintery Knight reviews some examples of what happened when “Gay activists were posting names and addresses of those who donated to to support Prop. 8” in California:
Marjorie Christoffersen, daughter of the owners of the Los Angeles restaurant El Coyote, left town after hundreds of protesters targeted her parent’s eatery because she made a personal $100 contribution to the Yes on 8 fund. Police in riot gear were called to restore order. Gay rights activists also began a campaign to post negative restaurant reviews online. The restaurant employs several gays and lesbians who said they were taken aback by the protests.
. . .
In Fresno, a prominent pastor, who had campaigned publicly for Proposition 8, received credible death threats that also targeted the mayor, another traditional marriage supporter. The threats were deemed credible enough for the police department to assign officers to protect the men. The church was also targeted for vandalism.
. . .
In other areas of the state, cars were keyed, signs defaced and a block was thrown through the window of an elderly couple who displayed a Yes on 8 sign in their yard.
Read the whole thing. I’m sure that a few people on the fringes of any political orientation get rowdy sometimes. E.g., there were anonymous threats against leftist writer Frances Fox Piven, and I want to make it clear that I agree in condemning all such threats, even against her. But the thuggish delegitimization of dissent doesn’t exist on the right in anything like the scale on the left. Mrs. Piven is a professor and a published writer in The Nation, where she has publicly called for violence to advance her political agenda. Even so, again, I’m not saying that threats against her are ever OK. But please notice the asymmetry: On the right, a few nobodies anonymously threaten a public figure they disagree with. On the left, a leader and intellectual publicly calls for violence. Also on the left, among the non-elites, you get everything, from death threats to a pastor down to making life unlivable for a girl who donated a mere $100 for Proposition 8.
Don’t take my word for Marjorie Christoffersen’s story; it has been covered not only in the Christian Examiner and conservative blogs but also in places like Independent Gay Forum and the Los Angeles Times.
Can you find me anything like the equivalent on the right? A time that liberals, down to the level of ones who only privately donated a hundred dollars to their cause of choice, have faced anything like this much (in the parlance of our times) incivility?