The number of hate crimes against Latinos is going up, and one watchdog group says it's because of strong feelings about immigration.
The Southern Poverty Law Center says its latest count shows 888 hate groups in the United States, up from 602 just seven years ago.
At the same time, the FBI counts a 35% increase in hate crimes against Latinos between 2003 and 2006.
The center's report, called "The Year In Hate," suggests a connection between the two.
The center's report identifies 28 hate groups in North Carolina. Greenville is listed as the home of a Nation of Islam group, which the report indicates is "Black Separatist."
The center defines black separatists as follows: "Black separatists typically oppose integration and racial intermarriage, and they want separate institutions -- or even a separate nation -- for blacks. Most forms of black separatism are strongly anti-white and anti-Semitic, and a number of religious versions assert that blacks -- not Jews -- are the Biblical "chosen people" of God."
At least one group on the law center's list says it is an unfair target. The Federation For American Immigration Reform accuses the law center of trying to stop the debate about illegal immigration.
The center maintains that the Federation, known as "FAIR," has hatched the theory that Mexico is in a secret plot to "reconquer" the southwestern United States.
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