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What if They Gave a Klan Rally and Nobody Came?

By Mark Potok on April 5, 2010 - 1:58 pm, Posted in Klan

They really ought to call them the Ku Klutz Klan.

This Saturday, the Church of the National Knights of the Ku Klux Klan — a once-powerful organization that in 1960 coordinated more than 1,000 simultaneous cross burnings in a frightening display of Southern resistance to desegregation — held a rally in Gloverdale, S.C. It was attended by a single Klansman: state leader Tim Bradley.

Not making an appearance were the 1,000 people from four states that a confederate of Bradley’s had predicted. A promised speech never materialized, only endless rounds of Bradley giving interviews to local reporters while some 100 curiosity-seekers looked on. And the 30 or so Klansmen who Bradley said were headed to the rally that day? Well, they got lost on the way from North Carolina. Bradley kept telling reporters his comrades were about to arrive. But they never did.

Even the “rally” that did occur was something of a miracle. Earlier, the group planned to gather in a different location — but a local church had already reserved that park. Then, Bradley shifted the date in a bid to work out another location. Later, a local shopping center forbade the Klansmen from meeting prior to the rally in its parking lot, issuing a letter saying anyone there with “Ku Klux Klan, confederate, southern heritage or racist paraphernalia” would be arrested.

It was hardly the first time that the National Knights, a group that has developed a reputation as the Keystone Kops of white supremacy, was embarrassed. In 2001, protesters rained down debris on the heads of Klansmen after a rally outside South Bend, Ind. The retreating Klansmen had forgotten where they parked their cars.

A year later, in late 2002, National Knights Imperial Wizard Railton Loy held a “Christmas unity rally” on his son’s Osceola, Ind., farm. They had hoped to bring together different factions of the radical right but managed to forget that many of the attendees were adherents of the anti-Semitic theology of Christian Identity, which says whites are the real Hebrews of the Bible and therefore can’t eat pork. They served an undercooked roast pig, disgusting many of their horrified visitors. At the same gathering, visitors noticed that Loy’s son, Rick Loy, had a swollen lip and two missing front teeth. It turned out someone had given him a riot shield alleged to be bulletproof. The younger Loy put the matter to a test, firing a close-range shot at the shield. Unsurprisingly, a bullet fragment ricocheted off the shield and hit him in the mouth. Finally, attempts to burn a swastika and a cross at the rally ended in miserable failure; neither of the symbols wanted to stand up straight.

Despite the antics of the National Knights — a group that Bradley spent Saturday insisting was not racist in any way — it remains a potentially violent and dangerous group. In 2003, member Glen Gautier confessed his role in the brutal murder of another member, triggering state and federal investigations. In the end, another two members of the National Knights pleaded guilty in connection with a plot to blow up the Johnston County, N.C., courthouse and kill the local sheriff there.

After completing his one-man show, Bradley — who at one point shook hands with two black high school students doing a project on the Klan —decided the rally had been a success. Without any evidence to back him up, and pretty much everything seeming to contradict him, he said the rally had netted him 27 new members.

  • Nagayoshi Nagai

    True, can’t wait to see what the next fad is!

  • beholder

    Nagayoshi Nagai, yes you are probably right. But Fox News will invent something else for us to laugh at once the Tea Party dries up. Bill O’Reilly just keeps getting crankier as he ages, and that’s always good for some sport.

  • beholder

    NTX is is perfectly valid to address the failure of the Tea Party to do anything about the racists and dangerous extremists within its organization.

    As long as it continues to shield them and count on their support, the Tea Party is correctly to be viewed as a racist and extremist organization that should be shut down.

    And NTX, it’s a little ironic to hear you complain about name calling.

  • Eric Mac

    As Nelson would say,… Ha Ha!

  • Nagayoshi Nagai

    “I don’t think the tea party will have much relevance within a few years, if that.”

    Beholder you have a very good point, but it’s laughable while it lasts and I guess the only bad thing about them eventually fading away will be the loss of good joke material.

  • Snorlax

    “The idiot Boomer generation.”

    Speak for yourself, du-u-u-de.

    Please don’t condemn our entire generation because of Dubya.

    We’re not all as brain damaged as he is.

  • NTX

    Nagayoshi Nagai said, on April 13th, 2010 at 9:56 pm

    “The tea party ding dongs are basically from the same stock as the klan and it’s very obvious.”

    [Me] This is a bigoted lie. The TEA (Taxed Enough Already) party-goers are people who are standing up for their rights as citizens to petition their government. Some may have ulterior motives, but it is unfair to make assumptions about the entire group.

    Oh – and the name-calling doesn’t help your argument, either.

  • Nagayoshi Nagai

    The tea party ding dongs are basically from the same stock as the klan and it’s very obvious. Don’t try to defend them. Just because there may be a couple people here and there that go to their little rallies and happen to be not incredibly ignorant with shades of racism doesn’t mean anything, they most surely are the exception to the rule. I work for the media and have been to a rally personally to cover the idiocy and most of the signs were fixated on Obama alone, this may or may not mean anything. I get to see raw b-roll of these rallies all the time and see interviews with them and their hilarious but hateful signs that usually make absolutely no sense but are still funny as hell. The bulk of them would fit in perfectly at a klan rally.

  • http://none WFBI

    The Tea Baggers are morons! They are violent and like the Boomers they are, mean spirited filth!

    I protest against them for another group during the health care squabble. I saw a man knock one of the older ladies in our group down. He was arrested in San Antonio, TX. If you think you can defend them good luck stupid!

  • http://none WFBI

    Where were all the Tea Baggers when GW was spending our money and running up the bill we can’t pay? Are you people more than stupid? You have given away with the passage of the Patriot Act what millions fought and died for! How dare you open your filthy mouths and utter anything!

    Unfortunately I am one of the generation problem. The idiot Boomer generation. I hate that I had to be born with this worthless group of Me Me’s but I had no say in that!

    My only satisfaction will be watching them all go down to the soup lines and beg for a hand out! Normal for most because this is what their used to. What’s wrong with the US is YOU!

  • beholder

    I don’t think the tea party will have much relevance within a few years, if that.

  • daemonesslisa

    Dick…indeed. Posting links to pictures of anti-semitic protests and calling them liberals? Please go away!

  • dick

    These are links to a photo blog of two types of protests.
    The people that love to think of “tea party” people as racists will want to check out both links.

    After looking at both links, ask yourself who are the haters.

    Behind Door #1

    Behind Door #2

    Choose wisely.

  • Mark E. Smith

    Jimbo, in preparing your case, there are two books that you need to read.

    The first is Agents of Repression by Ward Churchill. This book explains about the FBI and how it kills people to maintain the status quo and prevent change.

    The other is Jailhouse Lawyers by Mumia Abu Jamal. This explains how our justice system really works and why having the facts and the law on your side is no guarantee of winning a case.

    Those of us who don’t like killing have a difficult time in our society where killing is considered a game and a career path. I wish you all the best.

  • MrsCaptJack

    @ Andy ~ The bible tells all of us that Jesus is the only way to salvation. Many Christians believe that if I don’t have Jesus that I’m going to hell for eternity, even if I live in an area where I have no exposure to the bible or Christianity. There are more than a billion Muslims in the world. I think it’s pretty safe to say that if they all decided to believe this way, we’d all be dead.

    On the other hand, almost every weekend I am verbally assaulted in my own home by Jehovah’s Witnesses (or Baptists) who are convinced I need to be saved. When I wish to discus Islam, I must seek out my Muslim friends. Not a one of them is beating feet on my street (or any street I’ve ever lived on) trying to convert the population. Not one of them has ever tried to convert me, even though I have brought up the subject of conversion.

    And before you tell me how I’m going to burn in hell, I’ll say this: I consider myself Christian, just not one that blindly follows a book altered by a bunch of people who wanted to control the masses.

  • Snorlax

    “I don’t buy into rhetoric that the tea party is “full” of haters.”

    Would you buy into the photos, videos and interviews that document widespread hate in the teabagger movement?

    Or are you just another Fox “News” moron who deliberately ignores facts you don’t like?

    Teabaggers are haters.

  • Snorlax

    Lets move on and stop hating one another over politics.
    by SickoftheHate

    Not until they apologize for Gitmo.

    They never will, either.

  • Jimbo

    A belated response – from an American Buddhist – to what ‘Andy’ said above about Islam.
    If you replaced, in your diatribe, the word ‘Islam’ with ‘Christianity’ and the Quaran quotes for the many similar Biblical ones (The Muslims, after all DO accept MOST of the Bible, after all), then you’d have the story of the (Un)Holy (Very)Roman Inquisition, the (Un)Holy (Jihad)Crusades, the destruction of the so-called ‘Hereseys’ by the Almighty Church.
    After having been targeted for a Klan Grudge attack – seen three people (a Jew, a Black Catholic, and a Black Muslim)KILLED as a result of it; then having my Conversion from Catholicism to Buddhism used by people who collaborated with MY KLAN ENEMIES (most of whom the Klan also hates – which is why they were targeted for manipulation) USED as an EXCUSE to ‘make Catholic Jihad’ on ME, while the Klan gets away with everything they did – UGH!
    That’s why I’m introducing two new terms to the world: The ‘Al Qatholic Church’ and ‘The Protest-n-Ban’!
    Change the Quaran for a Bible in these JERKS hands, and you’d not be able to tell them apart.
    And, YES, SPLC, ACLU, USAG Holder; I’m still working on bringing about a Legal Challenge that will – hopefully – put in PRISON certain people who need to go there; vis-a-vis Jessica Dolin, Jessica Williams, and James Jahar Akhbar Perez – all dead, in Portland, ‘tween May 17th 2003, and March 28th 2004; all dead because the FBI FUCKED UP!

  • daemonesslisa

    WFBI, where are you getting the impression I’m a right winger?! I’m the furthest thing from that if you can tell from my posts. A mistake, maybe?

  • SickoftheHate

    “Yeah, the Tea Party isn’t racist. They’re just out of their fucking minds.”

    The one thing I don’t get is that we are all Americans. The hatred for people who have different beliefs is getting old. Calling people who think different than you names is childish and solves nothing. This country is doomed to fail on an epic level if we treat one another this way. I don’t agree with everything on the Right or the Left. But if I agree with a point that is made on the Right that does dnot make me a Teabagger! Nor does me agreeing to something that the left says make me a Left Wing Nut! Lets move on and stop hating one another over politics.

  • TL

    OH snap! Now my earlier post is visible. Must be a bug in the software.

  • TL

    hummm. My post disappeared. Guess it wasn’t stupid enough???

  • David

    If it is indecorous to make inferences about intelligence based on politics, the pattern is amusing…lost while going to one event, forgetting the parking area on another.

    What can one say?

  • jeff

    so the KKK is moribund. what about the neo-Nazi groups and white supremacist groups? they have a similar agenda.

  • TL

    Klan had a rally in S.W. Ohio in the late 1980’s on a local farmer’s land and lauded the event to help out the farmer who was having financial problems. After the event, the check the Klansman gave to the farmer bounced.

    I don’t buy into rhetoric that the tea party is “full” of haters. Wouldn’t that make me a hater?

  • Mark E. Smith

    Ku Klutz Klan, mit a yiddishe tam — I love it.

    Even better: the Kook Klutz Klan.

    Not a laughing matter, of course. I just finished reading a book about the trial of an elderly Klansman in Mississippi, and of course the tea-party shlemiels have been displaying Klannish bigotry lately (which sometimes backfires on their wealthy corporate sponsors like the owner of the deadly Massey mines), but all good news is always welcome.

    And before anyone asks, I’m an atheist. I don’t believe in anything. After researching and finding solid evidence of something, I may accept it as fact, but believing in it or having faith in it seems to be going overboard.

  • Marisa

    Shadow Wolf, well said.

  • http://none dave varez

    “It was attended by a single Klansman: state leader Tim Bradley.”

    Good to hear , but still one too many.

    Shadow Wolf:
    “Although the Klan itself may be a relic of the past. But the racists white extremists had changed their Klan movement into the Teaparty movement, that’s where all the racist knuckle draggers are.”

    Venomlash :
    “Yeah, the Tea Party isn’t racist. They’re just out of their fucking minds.”

    The above two comments show how far we still have to go despite how far we’ve come.

  • http://none WFBI

    Yes, the Tea’s are made up of moronic bigots. Yes, the Klan is among them where they know it or not. The members of the Tea’s are being watched very closely because it contains citizens in its membership that are advocating domestic terrorism.

    As to: @daemonesslisa Your full of it! I was stationed there, not in the military for 10+ years. They don’t stone they simple chop off the heads of drug dealers. Something we should have considered doing here. I can tell from your language you’re a typical Evangelical right winger and possibly one of our hate group members.

  • Martha

    JB said,

    on April 6th, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    Will you stop with the “Teaparty movement is racist” crap already? Shadow wolf, you have obviously never attended a Tea Party rally, and by making that comment you’re just buying into the same kind of identity politics that leads to groups like the KKK in the first place!

    TeaParty not racist??? I guess you were in a cave during the TP rallies where people were carrying signs that showed President Obama as the Joker, or with a field of watermellons on the White House lawn. I could list several other offensive signs and acts the TP is responsile for, but as usual, you and your type would try to pick each one apart and justify it. We KNOW how you think just by what you write. You are transparent. Some of the people who are arming themselves are doing so to defend themselves against the right-wing nut jobs who want to celebrate the Confederacy, the “open carry” crowd, and foment violent revolution.
    The lies you people tell yourselves are incredible. The rest of you nut jobs are just plain liars.



  • Shadow Wolf

    I don’t if you are either blind while typing in here using your Braille keypads, ignorant or just another plain disavowel subconscious racist. I have attended a few local tea parties around my area, And have seen(as well as heard) racist tones being displayed what is mostly a band of screaming angry White insaniacs. Paranoid as they seem, some of them have brought signs that make referrence to racist stereotypes regarding our president as well as waving the Confederate flag, which is generally associated with the KKK and slavery. Its no suprising that people like you are in a constant state of denial, when everybody agrees that the teaparty movement is indeed a blatant form of racism, consisting of White extremists on the fringed. Get over yourself…. wing-ding.

  • mountaingirl08

    venomlash, please don’t call people twits unless they are on twitter, I guess. Otherwise, you’re correct.
    Racists always refer to those they hate as pedophiles. It’s part of the swamp of evil in which they fester. I would wonder about those who toss terms like that around as symptomatic of the “thou protesteth too much” behavioral pattern. It they are obsessed maybe they themselves have displayed such a proclivity. Because they are obsessed.

  • daemonesslisa

    Yes Andy, ignorance does reign, and you’ve proven it. Seriously, when all you have are conspiracy theories and scripture taken out of context, you really ought to admit mental bankruptcy.

    Provide *credible* links proving Saudi Arabia controls CAIR and the apparent jihad of the Muslim Student Association or get the hell out and don’t bother posting!

  • NTX

    daemonesslisa said, on April 6th, 2010 at 9:33 am

    “…were you inferring that CAIR is “militant-religious” just because they’re Muslims? Unbelievable.”

    [Me] Can you read? Those are YOUR warped inferences, not MINE.

    [daemonmelissa] “Oh, and nice attempt at a save by talking about business interests, but you still have it wrong: these people want to keep their offices pretty, and therefore will not hire certain people.”

    [Me] I don’t know what kind of “offices” you have worked in, or if you have ever worked in any office (as I doubt you have), but all must follow EEOC guidelines. (So, you’re the one who’s wrong here, but no surprise.) Larger corporations [500+ people] must be especially careful to include EEOC guideline-based ethics training for their management and workers.

  • NTX

    Shadow Wolf said, on April 5th, 2010 at 6:36 pm:

    “Although the Klan itself may be a relic of the past. But the racists white extremists had changed their Klan movement into the Teaparty movement, that’s where all the racist knuckle draggers are. This should come as no surprise to anyone. Since the vintage of being a ‘Klansman’ is quite embarressing.”

    [Me] I believe this SPLC article is referring to a protest held by the Klan at Ole Miss (U. of MS). According to an article I read, it fizzled in less than ten minutes. The Klan should have known that University students are not their target market. The Klan saw a phenomenal increase in enrollments and participation in the years following the illegal alien marches. These new members were mostly just mainstream citizens who were angry after seeing illegal aliens march in our streets. Think of this in terms of physics – every action causes an equal and opposite reaction. In the case with societies, this typically happens over time. Middle Class America is fed up.

    I see the Tea Party as pulling more mainstream members away from the Klan. The Tea Parties are a better venue based on better principals that citizens may use to voice their opinions and anger. Is the Tea Party being infiltrated by the Klan? I’m sure it is. It’s also infiltrated by RINOs and liberals in disguise, who are trying to find out information. What matters is the core values of the Tea Party movement, which are based on our Constitution. No one could honestly make that same statement about the Klan.

  • venomlash

    Yeah, the Tea Party isn’t racist. They’re just out of their fucking minds.

    @dave: You sir, are a twit. How about all the hoo-hah over “My Sweet Lord”? And I’d have thought that a portrayal in chocolate would be complementary! Flipping out over offensive things (and frankly, the cartoon was pretty damn offensive) is by no means limited to any one religion.
    You also demonstrate your own ridiculous prejudice by calling Muslims “mohammedans” and by declaring Mohammed a pedophile. Most reckonings have the youngest of his wives being perfectly pubescent by the time she moved in with him; women just were married early back in the day.
    Before you ask, I’m Jewish.

  • skinnyminny

    This is just too funny! Maybe WalMart in Phoenix should follow suit with arresting people with this type of behavior. Google “Nativist Go Nuts at a Phoenix Walmart, and the Arizona Republic Belittles the U.S. Attorneys Investigation of Sheriff Joe Arpaio.” ***in the Phoenix New Times, this article talks of Nativists that goes to WalMart with weapons, there is a picture with a Nativist that is alleged to be holding up/pointing a gun.

  • Andy

    “CAIR is “militant-religious” just because they’re Muslims? Unbelievable.”
    Whoa…ignorance reigns.

    CAIR is funded mainly by Saudi Arabia (that is where, for starters, they stone homosexuals, adulterers and anybody who dares to leave Islam..) CAIR employees have been indicted and un-indicted co-conspirators in terrorist activities in the USA

    As for being Muslims not being militant….
    The Muslim scholar Bassam Tibi explains it better….
    At its core, Islam is a religious mission to all humanity. Muslims are religiously obliged to disseminate the Islamic faith throughout the world. ”We have sent you forth to all mankind” (Q. 34:28). If non-Muslims submit to conversion or subjugation, this call (dawa) can be pursued peacefully. If they do not, Muslims are obliged to wage war against them. In Islam, peace requires that non-Muslims submit to the call of Islam, either by converting or by accepting the status of a religious minority (dhimmi) and paying the imposed poll tax, jizya. World peace, the final stage of the dawa, is reached only with the conversion or submission of all mankind to Islam. Muslims believe that expansion through war is not aggression but a fulfillment of the Quranic command to spread Islam as a way to peace. The resort to force to disseminate Islam is not war (harb), a word that is used only to describe the use of force by non-Muslims. Islamic wars are not hurub (the plural of harb) but rather futuhat, acts of “opening” the world to Islam and expressing Islamic jihad. Relations between dar al-Islam, the home of peace, and dar al-harb, the world of unbelievers, nevertheless take place in a state of war, according to the Quran and to the authoritative commentaries of Islamic jurists. Unbelievers who stand in the way, creating obstacles for the dawa, are blamed for this state of war, for the dawa can be pursued peacefully if others submit to it. In other words, those who resist Islam cause wars and are responsible for them. Only when Muslim power is weak is temporary truce (hudna) allowed (Islamic jurists differ on the definition of temporary).
    Or the Muslim Students’ Association, or Muslim Student Union, of the U.S. and Canada, also known as MSA National….
    The Muslim Students Association who shares according to the Muslim Brotherhood, the common goal of destroying America and turning it into a Muslim nation. Teaching Muslims “that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands … so that … God’s religion [Islam] is made victorious over all other religions.”

  • JB

    Will you stop with the “Teaparty movement is racist” crap already? Shadow wolf, you have obviously never attended a Tea Party rally, and by making that comment you’re just buying into the same kind of identity politics that leads to groups like the KKK in the first place!

  • dave

    Too bad the mohammedans wouldn’t show up to throw their collective temper tantrums every time someone draws a cartoon of their pedophile founder.

  • daemonesslisa

    Well, NXT, here’s another step in the right direction: how about not comparing CAIR, La Raza, and others to the Klan! And were you inferring that CAIR is “militant-religious” just because they’re Muslims? Unbelievable.

    Oh, and nice attempt at a save by talking about business interests, but you still have it wrong: these people want to keep their offices pretty, and therefore will not hire certain people.

  • Lex

    The klan is dead just get over it ,they are a thing of the past ,they have been replaced by the parties, and the new world order conspiracy nutjobs

  • Shadow Wolf

    Although the Klan itself may be a relic of the past. But the racists white extremists had changed their Klan movement into the Teaparty movement, that’s where all the racist knuckle draggers are. This should come as no surprise to anyone. Since the vintage of being a ‘Klansman’ is quite embarressing. I have to chuckle at this piece, for my first thought was, is this an April Fools satire? Then I realized this didn’t come out on April Fools Day. But yeah this was funny, given to the fact that a supposed big rally turned out to be a one man band. And I guess its fair to say the Klan is laughable.

  • NTX

    But, I will make this statement as well – I would consider it a ‘step in a good direction’ if “they” held a race-based or militant religious based rally (of any race and any religion) and no one showed up. (This would include such huge lobbyist organizations as LULAC, La Raza, CAIR, etc. Such a metaphor could also be extended to include any assembly of people of a certain age, gender, nationality, sexual orientation, etc. – every EEOC category that exists.) The stupidity of citizen self-segregation flies in the face of common sense where our business interests are concerned. Business leaders in this country need citizens who can “do the job”, regardless of any factors that they cannot control.

  • NTX

    “What If They Gave A Klan Rally And Nobody Came”??I would call it a step in a good direction.