The communication was like so many others that I ignore, if for no other reason than it arrived via Facebook; additionally, the originators of the communication the Ku Klux Klan did little to pique my interest. However, for some strange reason it continually reappeared in my group Manhood, Race, and Culture. This consistent reappearance eventually prodded me toward actually examining the document. Alas, I conceded and read the communication.
The document related a fervent desire by the Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan to protect the general public from “…the terrorists masquerading as peaceful protesters” in Saint Louis County aka the racial animus occurring in Ferguson, Missouri, issue. The KKK warned the lawless citizens of Ferguson that “Your right to freedom of speech does not give you the right to terrorize citizens” and that the Klan will “not sit by and allow you to harm our families, communities, property nor disrupt our daily lives.”
Although I was initially uncertain of how to respond to this veiled threat to maintain ‘law-and-order’ in Ferguson through the Klan’s usual extra-legal means of fear, intimidation, and cowardly terrorist activities, I eventually began to laugh uncontrollably at the implication that it is the African-American community, not the Ku Klux Klan, and like-minded terrorist organizations, that needed to be feared. The historical record indicates that the first terrorist organization operating in this nation was not some Muslim organization seeking to destroy it, rather, it was homegrown white domestic terrorism from groups such as the Ku Klux Klan, the Knights of the White Camellia, The Aryan Nation, local law enforcement agencies, etc. It was these groups that most stridently violated, and continue to violate to this day, the founding principles of this nation such as “All Men Are Created Equal” Freedom, Justice, and the pursuit of happines on a daily basis; all under the guise of protecting their country.
Therein lies the primary issue, the alluded to domestic terrorist groups utilize their free speech privileges to curtail the rights of those who disagree with their political viewpoints and vision for the nation. Now I am certain that the knee-jerk reaction of many of you reading this is to skirt the issue and say, well, what about Black organizations such as the Black Panther Party who do the exact same thing as the Klan.
Such an assertion is simultaneously foolish and reveals a gross lack of knowledge regarding the Black Panther Party. The group that forged inter-racial alliances with the white Peace and Freedom Party and had the support of notable white Hollywood figures such as Marlon Brando, Jane Fonda, and the list goes on and on. However, more recent manifestations of Panther politics such as the New Black Panther Party are neither grounded in the spirit of the original Panther Party nor supported by the African-American community; not even in a revealing silence, a tactic that whites routinely use to slyly throw their support behind white extremists who are publicly articulating what they are afraid to say themselves. Put simply, they do not denounce such matters, because there is a part of them that often agrees with what is being spewed by white extremist groups.
The Ku Klux Klan has as much right to pollute the world with their racist demagoguery as anyone else. The Klan should thank Crispus Attucks, the first man, a Black Man, to die during the American Revolution, and all of the enlisted men and women, of all races, who bravely served this nation from its founding until today for their rights and privileges. Despite their refusal to recognize it, the implied repercussions for the expression of political dissent by the people of Ferguson puts the Klan in the exact same position as the tyrannical British Government that this nation’s founding fathers broke away from. In this instance, it is the people of Ferguson whose articulation of their angst and disagreement with a tyrannical militarized majority who are operating out of this nation’s best traditions of resisting exploitation, abuse, and untold occurrences of uncivilized savagery.
In conclusion, I must add that it is laughable that the Ku Klux Klan, with its long-storied history of racially inspired violence, would attempt to present itself as a law-abiding organization. It is analogous to a pack of Lions telling their helpless prey that they need to straighten up and quit complaining about their loved one’s being eaten whenever the Lions were hungry; from the Lions perspective, such protest is little more than a nuisance that needs to cease immediately. However, I think that these hooded cowards may be in for quite a surprise if they attempt to roll up on the new millennium African-American man who is not afraid of them as their ancestors were. Although the Klan’s power has usually flowed from a intimidation factor, I am certain that this newest model of African-American is unafraid of their posturing and veiled threats. And such a proposition has to be downright frightening for individuals who used to be the biggest bully on the block.
Dr. James Thomas Jones III
* Please join the writers of Manhood, Race, & Culture along with Maurice D. Muhammad on “Legacy of a Nation” Blog talk radio @ 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM today (November 12, 2014) for a discussion over this very poignant topic. The number to call in is 661-554-9123.