WDET, Papers Campaign Against 'Right-Wing Extremism'
March 30, 2010 at 4:27 AM (PT)
WAYNE STATE UNIVERSITY noncommercial WDET/DETROIT is joining with local ethnic- and religious-oriented newspapers to counter what it calls "right-wing extremism" with a partnership to "raise awareness of the growth of Radical Right movements in MICHIGAN, and the country at large." The partnership with the JEWISH NEWS, the ARAB AMERICAN NEWS, the MICHIGAN CHRONICLE, and LATINO, along with participation from the SOUTHERN POVERTY LAW CENTER, puts the "Tea Party" movement in with Christian militias and anti-illegal immigration groups as "hate groups." Nine members of a Christian militia group were arrested this week for allegedly plotting the murder of police officers to foment an uprising against the government.
WDET GM MIKEL ELLCESSOR said, "The explosive growth of three distinct groups, the Tea Party movement, the Patriot movement, with the militias as their paramilitary arms, and the nativist anti-immigration movement has been underway for the past year. While these are distinct movements with their own animus, there is a well-documented and rising level of extreme rhetoric coming from all three groups. This rhetoric has contributed to an environment that is fostering violence from the extreme right and multiple instances of domestic terrorism."
"This editorial project is designed to raise awareness of this issue and to challenge the people of Michigan to ask hard questions of their politicians and media," added ELLCESSOR. "Because of MICHIGAN's unique relationship with the militia movement, we encourage every citizen to understand the ways extreme rhetoric laced with violent imagery has permeated our society and contributed to a climate where six law enforcement officers have been murdered by far right extremists in the last year."
The station and newspapers are airing and publishing their reports this week and next.
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