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Founder and president of ACT for America, Brigette Gabriel, failed to respond to a request by Downtown newsmagazine for comment. Gabriel in the past has said the group was launched in response to the 9/11 attacks to educate officials on national security and defeating terrorism. In 2006, she released her book, "Because They Hate: A Survivor of Islamic Terror Warns America." The SPLC describes the book a call to action based on the "truth" behind Islam that Gabriel says she learned as a child during the civil war in Lebanon, essentially claiming the religion is inherently violent and that true believers cannot assimilate to American culture and society.
Recently, Gabriel has attacked the "radical left" on the organization's website, stating: "The radical left is organized and dangerous. From violent mobs trying to silence freedom of speech at our universities, to liberal judges endangering all of us by blocking the president from vetting refugees, to the complicit media pushing an anti-America, anti-national security and pro-Islamic, politically correct agenda. The leftist Islamic coalition is waging war against the rule of law and against you and me." Secure Michigan
, based in New Baltimore, operates the website www.securemichigan.org
, which brands itself a refugee resettlement monitor that is "monitoring the fundamental transformation of America." Listed by the SPLC as an anti-Muslim hate group, the site is a local offshoot of Maryland activist Ann Corcoran's blog, Refugee Resettlement Watch
. A request for comment from the Michigan site didn't receive a response.
The Secure Michigan website's domain is registered to Gary Kubiak of Shelby Township, who is the director of the southeast Michigan Tea Party. Phone and email messages left for Kubiak weren't returned.
Content on the website includes an interview with "anti-Islamic whistleblower" Philip Haney by Troy resident Janice Daniels, who was recalled as that city's mayor in 2012 following anti-homosexual remarks she made to high school students.
Secure Michigan also posted a link to Cocoran's blog and a "Letter to Media" dated September 8, 2017, in which she and about 40 other representatives from SPLC-designated hate groups urge members of the media to ignore the SPLC and its "discredited" map.
"To associate public interest law firms and think tanks with Neo-Nazis and the KKK is unconscionable, and represents the height of irresponsible journalism," the letter states. "All reputable news organizations should immediately stop using the SPLC's descriptions of individuals and organizations based on its obvious political prejudices."...continued on page 7