Eugene Delgaudio: "Federal Court Bars Southern Poverty Law Center from Reckless Endangerment of Pro-Family Activist"
(Denver, Colorado, January 11, 2013.) A federal district judge in Colorado ordered the Southern Poverty Law Center ("SPLC") to remove a document revealing the home address of the President of Public Advocate of the United States, a leading nonprofit advocacy organization supporting traditional marriage, to prevent potential "politically motivated harassment or even violence."
Public Advocate was sued in Colorado by SPLC attorneys representing two homosexuals in a dispute arising out of Public Advocate's opposition to state legislators supporting homosexual marriage in that state. In that litigation, the SPLC attorneys recklessly posted the home address of Public Advocate's President, Eugene Delgaudio, in a pleading that was available to the public as part of the public record of the case.
After SPLC attorneys refused a request to immediately remove the home address, Public Advocate asked the Court to order its removal and to bar SPLC's use of his address in other ways. The Court granted Public Advocate's motion, ordering SPLC attorneys to file a redacted version so that the private address would not be disclosed.
In its request to the Court, Public Advocate explained that SPLC had labeled it an "Anti-Gay" Hate Group because of its position against homosexual marriage. Public Advocate pointed out to the Court that after Family Research Council was identically labeled a "Anti-Gay" Hate Group by SPLC, a homosexual activist attacked the FRC offices in Washington, D.C., shooting and wounding a security guard. The activist was later indicted for committing domestic terrorism.
In fact, this activist was the first person ever indicted under the District of Columbia's anti-terror statute. In the investigation of the shooting, Public Advocate was advised by the Federal Bureau of Investigation that the shooter possessed a list of pro-Family organizations he had obtained from the Internet, including FRC and Public Advocate.
Further, the FRC shooter had been seen at Public Advocate's office.
The President of the FRC, Tony Perkins, stated in response to the shooting that while the gunman "was responsible for the wounding of one of our colleagues and one of my friends yesterday ... I believe that he was given a license by a group such as the Southern Poverty Law Center, who ... labeled us a hate group."
Having a similar concern, Public Advocate President Eugene Delgaudio issued the following statement:
"Although I am still concerned, as the President of an organization that the Southern Poverty Law Center has labeled an 'Anti-Gay hate group,' that my family and I are at risk from violence by certain deranged people who are inspired to such acts against persons that the SPLC is targeting, I am relieved that the Court ordered that SPLC remove my home address from their filing in the Colorado litigation.
"The SPLC lawyers had Public Advocate's office address and phone number, and had no reason to reveal my home address. Yet, I was not surprised, as such practices are consistent with SPLC's goal of intimidation of pro-family activists. SPLC attaches odious labels to persons or organizations with which they disagree, regardless of the effect such dangerous rhetoric may have on certain unbalanced people - like the domestic terrorist who attacked the FRC. I believe that such SPLC practices, at the very least, constitute reckless endangerment of pro-family leaders. If there is a category of Hate-Inciting Groups, SPLC would top the list."