The self-styled “civil rights” organization Southern Poverty Law Center, which despite mounting controversy maintains some links to government agencies, released a bizarre and factually challenged screed attacking critics and opponents of the deeply controversial United Nations plot known as Agenda 21. Apparently unfamiliar with the definition of basic words such as “conspiracy” and “theory,” or with the UN plan itself, the SPLC also lashed out at “activist groups,” “mainstream politicians,” voters, “extremists,” and others who question or oppose the UN agenda for what it calls “sustainable development” in the United States.
In mid-April, the largely discredited group released a “Special Report” entitled “Agenda 21: The UN, Sustainability and Right-Wing Conspiracy Theory.” The document tries to link opposition to the international “sustainable-development” schemes to the so-called “right-wing.” However, even in Alabama, where the SPLC is based, that discredited talking point has been exposed as ridiculous. Consider, for example, the fact that every single member of the state legislature, including all Democrats, voted in 2012 for a law to protect private property by officially banning UN Agenda 21.
“Agenda 21, a nonbinding United Nations global sustainability plan signed by the United States more than 20 years ago, is being used by extremists and mainstream politicians to stoke fears and stifle rational policymaking across the country,” the SPLC claimed in a summary of its “Special Report” posted online. Of course, the scheme was not “signed by the United States,” much less ratified by the U.S. Senate as required; it was merely signed by then-President George H.W. Bush. However, the UN plan is nevertheless being quietly foisted on Americans by all levels of government under a variety of innocent-sounding names. By “rational policymaking,” meanwhile, the SPLC presumably means the adoption of policies that the leftist fringe group supports.
Consider, also, that the SPLC’s description of Agenda 21 as a harmless “nonbinding” plan is completely at odds with reality and even the UN’s own documents. “Agenda 21 is a comprehensive plan of action to be taken globally, nationally and locally by organizations of the United Nations System, Governments, and Major Groups in every area in which human impacts [sic] on the environment,” the UN explains in a brief summary of the scheme posted on its website. When considering the fact that the UN considers carbon dioxide, also known as human breath, to be “pollution,” the scope of the plot becomes even more alarming to critics.
On so-called sustainability, meanwhile, the UN and its ringleaders have also been fairly explicit in explaining their goals. “Current lifestyles and consumption patterns of the affluent middle class — involving high meat intake, the use of fossil fuels, electrical appliances, home and work-place air-conditioning and suburban housing — are not sustainable,” explained UN Earth Summit Secretary-General Maurice Strong as he ushered in Agenda 21 two decades ago. In other words, the UN sustainability agenda eventually seeks to curtail people’s choices in terms of food, transportation, housing, and much more. The document itself makes that abundantly clear, too.
To monitor compliance with its bizarre, totalitarian-minded scheme, signed in 1992 by dictators and politicians purporting to represent about 170 governments and autocracies, the UN even set up a committee. “The Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) was created in December 1992 to ensure effective follow-up of UNCED, to monitor and report on implementation of the agreements at the local, national, regional and international levels,” the UN says on its website.
For the extremist SPLC, though, opposing or even questioning a UN “comprehensive plan of action” by all levels of government in “every area in which human impacts [sic] on the environment” must somehow be the handiwork of “right-wing” so-called “conspiracy theorists.” Yes, seriously; that is what the group is attempting to claim in its latest “Special Report.” Sounding wildly detached from reality — or deliberately deceptive, perhaps — report author and SPLC “Intelligence Project” Director Heidi Beirich even claimed: “The hysteria over Agenda 21 has no basis in reality.”
Ironically, in its 23-page report attempting to paint opposition to the UN scheme as a “right-wing” phenomenon, the SPLC glosses over opposition to Agenda 21 among Democrats and leftists, giving them a mere paragraph that begins with the word “remarkably.” The report, typical of the SPLC’s transparent propaganda tactics meant to associate truly repugnant views with mainstream political positions it opposes, also mentions that some neo-National Socialists (neo-Nazis) have opposed Agenda 21 as well. But what does that prove? Like the SPLC, the National Socialists also opposed Biblical Christianity, free markets, traditional values, and more. In fact, critics of the SPLC argue that it is akin to an “anti-Christian hate group.”
With the release of its latest hysterical report, it is becoming increasingly clear that opposition to Agenda 21 has stalled the advance of the SPLC’s own radical agenda. “Unfortunately, it has poisoned rational discussion of the challenges facing communities,” Beirich claimed about opposition to the UN scheme in a summary announcing her report on the SPLC’s website. “If we want to address real-world problems, we must recognize there’s no genuine controversy surrounding Agenda 21. There are only groundless conspiracy theories peddled by extremists and opportunistic politicians.”
Apparently Beirich has never bothered to read Agenda 21 or related UN documents, some of which even call for dramatically altering the views, opinions, and behavior of every person on the planet — in addition to the economy, governments, Western civilization, and more. She also seems to have failed to do much, if any, research on whether or not the UN scheme was being implemented. The report concludes by merely stating that “it’s not clear” if federal, state, or local governments were imposing Agenda 21 on Americans. In the real world, as The New American magazine and countless experts have documented, it is actually very clear.
Despite hysterical ranting against “conspiracy theories,” ironically, the SPLC report reads largely like a gigantic (and bizarre) conspiracy theory concocted by paranoid pro-UN extremists. The authors, for instance, go to great lengths to suggest that the constitutionalist John Birch Society led some sort of vast right-wing conspiracy to successfully oppose Agenda 21. It then points out that the Republican National Committee, which adopted a resolution blasting the UN scheme, and countless politicians and multiple state governments, have also taken strong stands against the international machinations.
Of course, it is not the first time in recent memory that the fringe SPLC has bemoaned the growing influence of the liberty-minded John Birch Society. In fact, just over a year ago, the supposed “civil rights” outfit released an entire screed complaining about the increasing prominence of the liberty-minded organization in the conservative movement and the Republican Party. However, to suggest that the fierce, overwhelming, and bipartisan opposition to Agenda 21 was all concocted by the JBS, the parent organization of this magazine, seems rather paranoid at best. The SPLC also hysterically denounces the fact that politicians who support the UN scheme or its implementation have been swept out of office by voters.
“Implementation of Agenda 21 was moving merrily ahead here in the United States — enlisting generous infusions of cash from numerous city councils, county commissions and other local government agencies — while next to none of these local officials realized that its behind-the-scenes parentage was the United Nations,” explained JBS President John McManus in a statement. “If the program is so beneficial to mankind, one should ask why its source hasn't been proudly announced.”
In an e-mail to The New American, McManus said the answer can be grasped by understanding the frightening enormity of the UN scheme as revealed by Daniel Sitarz, the editor of the thousand-page Agenda 21 document. “Sitarz noted that the program's overall purpose boils down to forcing ‘a profound reorientation of all human society, unlike anything the world has ever experienced’,” McManus said, quoting the fervent supporter of the plot.
“To further grasp the long-range goals of what is planned, Sitarz wrote that this UN-created program must be carried out by a multitude of organizations and ‘every person on Earth,’” the JBS president continued. “The American people owe The John Birch Society a huge debt of gratitude for focusing attention on this scheme by sharing information about it that has led to withdrawal of many government agencies and the refusal of others to become involved.”
The Alabama-based leftist fringe group SPLC has become increasingly discredited in recent years — especially after its hate propaganda was cited by a deranged terrorist who in 2012 sought to massacre employees of a pro-family group for supporting marriage. However, despite being ridiculed even in the establishment media, as well as indications that the federal government is disassociating itself from the extremist organization, some agencies and departments of the Obama administration continue to use discredited SPLC propaganda for various purposes.
In its failing effort to avoid becoming completely irrelevant and marginalized, the SPLC has also gone to great lengths to paint its critics as being mostly conservatives, Christians, libertarians, and “hate” groups. In reality, however, some of the harshest criticism of the SPLC has actually come from major figures associated with the political Left. Prominent civil rights attorney Stephen Bright, president of the Southern Center for Human Rights, for example, citing investigations and a federal judge, blasted SPLC co-founder Morris Dees as “a con man and fraud” who “has taken advantage of naive, well-meaning people.”
As the SPLC becomes a public laughingstock, its bizarre ranting and paranoid theories are increasingly falling on deaf ears. Its latest report on Agenda 21, for example, other than this report, was picked up by just one “media” outlet, the so-called “Daily Beast” blog. That outlet also acknowledged the bipartisan nature of the opposition to the UN scheme, pointing to the group Democrats Against Agenda 21 and “self-described lesbian feminist” Rosa Koire, who authored the book Behind the Green Mask: U.N. Agenda 21. Still, “Daily Beast” reporter Caitlin Dickson was promptly and mercilessly ridiculed in the comments section for parroting discredited SPLC propaganda in her article.
While the influence of the extremist SPLC may be crumbling, the UN continues to launch increasingly brazen attacks on the United States and its Constitution. Most recently, for example, the international outfit, widely ridiculed as the “dictators club,” released a “human rights” report attacking the Second Amendment and America’s constitutional system of self-government. With collaboration from Obama administration policy architect John Podesta, the UN also produced a recent document on “sustainability” calling on the UN and its “partners” to have every person on Earth “alter their worldview, profoundly and dramatically.”
The best course of action, according to advocates of liberty and national sovereignty, would be for the U.S. government to simply withdraw from the global outfit entirely. Legislation currently in Congress, H.R. 75: American Sovereignty Restoration Act, would do precisely that. In the meantime, though, Americans who support private-property rights, Judeo-Christian values, individual rights, prosperity, and self-government should continue to oppose UN Agenda 21 and all of its innocently named manifestations.
Alex Newman is a correspondent for The New American, covering economics, education, politics, and more. He can be reached at