Newsweek reports that many petitions are making the rounds online to force the US government to designate the KKK as a terrorist group. The petitions originated with change.org and have been shared all over the net. The petitions calling for the country’s oldest white supremacist group to be called terrorists is trending in Twitter’s top ten. The KKK is currently considered an extremist group but has never been officially named a domestic terror group.
— Danasiah (@Danasiah2) June 9, 2020
One petition reads, “Black Americans have suffered the most under this terror group. Terrorism is the use of violence and intimidation in pursuit of political aims.” It goes on to say, “We ask if ISIS or ISIL is labeled a terrorist group for their acts, then surely the KKK fit the clear description of a terrorist.” It also says, “Think about the pain African Americans endure every single day for the color of their skin. Think about how hard it must be for them to know that they can be murdered by a cop no matter their innocence, but a group that is inherently violent and racist is allowed to exist.”
The call for the racist group’s change in status has been sought by many antiracist groups for many years but the government has never made a move. The Klan was originally formed after the South lost the Civil War and was made up of mostly ex-confederate soldiers. The group’s mission statement was to save white society from freed blacks. Propaganda by the Klan often portrayed free blacks as savages and menaces to society. Special emphasis was put on protecting white women from black men.
The renewed call for the redesignation of the KKK comes as antiracist protests continue to rage across America after the police killing of black man, George Floyd by a white officer. White supremacists are believed by the FBI to be some of the actors causing violence during peaceful protests. One man believed to be a white supremacist was arrested with explosives. another reason for petitions is the fact that there are still Klan members joining police forces. There have been many officers fired for having KKK applications in their possession.
David Hickton, a former U.S. Attorney had this to say about the threat of white supremacy, “White supremacy is a greater threat than international terrorism right now,” he said. “I’d have to pursue a white supremacist with hate crimes unless he interfaced with Al-Qaeda. Does that make any sense?”
As the fight against racism continues it remains to be seen if the government finally acts on the Ku Klux Klan.
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Travis Earle is a veteran of the United States Navy and a resident of Memphis, Tennessee. He serves as a politics writer for Hill Reporter. Travis@HillReporter.com