Forget South Africa! White nationalist lawyer murdered in Mississippi by black neighbor

Note to readers!  I am not relating this to anything involving refugees (except maybe white ones)!  But, because I have written about the trouble on-going in South Africa, about the Brandon Huntley case, a white South African seeking refugee status in Canada, and most importantly because I have written about Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center and his recent campaign to ‘out’ racists, you should see this story from Mississippi.

Although the murder happened two days ago,  I haven’t seen it in the national news yet, have you?

From AP:

PEARL, Miss. — A white supremacist lawyer known for riding his bicycle around his quiet, rural neighborhood was stabbed and beaten to death by a black neighbor who had done yard work for him, police said today.

A preliminary autopsy showed Richard Barrett, 67, was stabbed multiple times in the neck and bashed in the head, Rankin County Sheriff Ronnie Pennington said. He had burns over 35 percent of his body, though investigators believe he was killed Wednesday night and his house set on fire Thursday to cover up his death.

Pennington did not disclose a motive but said neighbor Vincent McGee, 22, was charged with murder Thursday and deputies charged three other people in the case Friday. Albert Lewis, McGee’s stepfather, was charged with being an accessory after the fact, while Vicky and Michael Dent, who live nearby, are charged with being accessories after the fact and arson.

Barrett had founded an organization called the Nationalist Movement.

Then here is the most interesting part of this article as far as I’m concerned.  Check out who AP goes to as the expert—-Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center!  I just this week listened to him railing against the Patriot movement on the Laura Ingraham show where he charged that what he called their hate-filled language was going to cause violence.   Here is the big question, does the Southern Poverty Law Center’s hate-filled language against certain white groups and its attacks on individuals cause violence on those they ‘out’ as racists?

If this weren’t such a horrible case, what Potok says here is funny.

Barrett traveled the country to promote anti-black and anti-immigrant views and founded a supremacist group called the Nationalist Movement. He had a knack for publicity but little real influence, one expert said. [AP–get another ‘expert’]

“Richard Barrett was a guy who ran around the country essentially pulling off publicity stunts,” said Mark Potok, who monitors hate groups for the Alabama-based Southern Poverty Law Center. “He really never amounted to any kind of leader in the white supremacist movement.”

I don’t know if Barrett had any influence or not, but it looks like Potok is trying really hard to say he was just a bit player so therefore his murder couldn’t possibly be linked to any words coming from the SPLC.  Huh?

By the way, Potok says Barrett pulled off “publicity stunts”—I guess Potok knows full well how to spot those.

But, interestingly, in just a minute or two I found two places where the SPLC took Barrett pretty seriously—here on their website in an essay about how the nationalist movement was serious and in a lawsuit they participated in against him.  From the wikipedia page:

In 1987, the Nationalist Movement won a lawsuit in which the Southern Poverty Law Center alleged that it had violated the Civil Rights Act.

I bet a little research would turn up many such confrontations between the SPLC and Barrett or his organization.

Believe me, I am the last person who would point a finger at someone using words to make their argument.  I don’t believe the ‘words create violence’ theory being thrown around by the SPLC or Bill Clinton against Tea Partiers and Patriots or anyone, but what drives me insane is the hypocrisy of people like Potok who espouse the theory —but don’t you dare charge them with the same crime!

Oh, and on that hypocrisy thing.  Imagine if this was the murder of a black lawyer at the SPLC  by a white neighbor  in  a Southern town, the  mainstream media would have 24/7 coverage for a week or more and Potok would be parading from one news show to the next from morning till night with a sanctimonious I told you so attitude!

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