Sunday, November 22, 2009
NOTE: I have purposely avoided citing references in this article since I do not want to link to the Klan's website and increase their page rank any further. Please Google "Mississippi White Knights of the Klu Klux Klan" to verify information.
This post is the result of a piece of news I came across yesterday about the Mississippi White Knights of the Klu Klux Klan rallying before an Ole Miss game.I know you hear all the time that the Klan is irrelevant today and has lost its power and influence, but it hasn't completely died yet.
In the 60s, this very same cell of the Klan was responsible for the deaths of the three well known civil rights workers Andrew Goodman, James Chaney, and Michael Schwerner. James Chaney was black but Schwerner known as the "Goatee" among the Klan members, was the most hated. He was a Jew who rallied for the cause of African Americans and was promoting registration to vote among Mississippi African Americans. He was hunted down and shot at close range. He was a very brave man. The Klan tried to murder him a number of times before he was finally shot down in Neshoba county, Mississippi. They were expecting him at the Mount Zion church in Longdale earlier and when he did not show up, killed all the black men and women they could lay hands on and burnt the church. On hearing this, Schwerner headed to Missisipi to investigate the incident and fell victim to the members of the Klan.
Today, the mastermind behind these cold-blooded murders, Edgar Ray Killen is 80 yrs old, has dodged prison a number of times and is receiving donations -donations for man slaughter, from the Mississippi White Knights of the Klu Klux Klan. Protected by the first amendment, The Klan openly runs a website, uses the term "negroes" and has the audacity to claim that the whites have a higher IQ than the blacks. There are other equally ridiculous and baseless claims the website makes but I am not going to waste my time and energy talking about them. I don't think they deserve any attention or importance. I also found proof on their website to establish that republicans are indeed stupid blood sucking racist leeches. These are the images the Klan proudly displays on its website.
Even today I see some incidents that remind me of this sad past. The black Harvard professor being arrested by a cop for entering his own house , the loud, angry racist statements at the Palin rallies and so on. And though the Klan was outnumbered by the protesters in Mississippi , I have to ask where the rest of the student body was. 250 from a university with 17,000 people? They were perhaps watching Ole Miss take it out on LSU in a game dominated by blacks. Isn't it ironic? While the aforementioned events bog me down, the comments the HuffPo article received from its numerous readers cheered me up and the faces of my friends that I see everyday at work gives me hope.
As I sit here sipping a warm cup of tea, curled on my couch writing this article, I am aware that my freedom is a result of the sacrifices made by those brave souls who lay down their lives so people like me can have a decent one. I salute you and pray you give us strength if we are ever called.