I'm not sure what MSNBC's Chris Hayes thought he was accomplishing by bringing the Ku Klux Klan's imperial wizard, Frank Arcona, on his show and allowing someone who has obviously had a lot of media training to come across as somewhat harmless and rational, rather than the dangerous zealot that the mailers his group has been sending out lately have shown him to be, but that's what his audience was treated to this Wednesday night.
I like Hayes a lot, but Arcona got a pass on his show because Hayes is just too damned polite. Someone like Arcona who is trying to pretend that he hasn't been trying to incite violence with the fliers his group has been mailing out deserves the Cenk Uygur treatment, where he's relentlessly pounded to defend his words in the flier where he showed his true colors, rather than the softball treatment he received in the clip above.
Hayes did give Arcona some push back on his claim that he's hearing from local law enforcement and got him to admit that anything he might have heard has been third hand. Let's hope that's true because things are already bad enough in this city without having members of our police department in direct contact with members of the Klan for their PR.
PoliticusUSA has more here:
The Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan started distributing a flier in the St. Louis area promising to use lethal force against any protesters in Ferguson they deem to be violent. Frank Ancona, the imperial wizard of the chapter, spoke with the Riverfront Times regarding the flier and the intentions of the KKK in Ferguson as large-scale protests loom with the approaching grand jury announcement in the Darren Wilson case. Ancona not only claimed that the protesters are “terrorists,” but he also said recruitment for the chapter has soared in the wake of the protests that began in August after unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot and killed by Wilson. Ancona said the following to the RFT regarding the group’s membership ranks:
“These Ferguson protesters are the best recruiters since Obama. Normally we might hear from ten people a week in Missouri, and now we’re hearing from more like fifty people a week. Sometimes, depending on these news stories, we get 100, 200 calls in a day.”
As for the flier, it began making the rounds on Twitter and Facebook Tuesday afternoon and started to gain attention.
Ancona claims that this isn’t about race (yeah, right) but more about protecting people and property in and around Ferguson. He points to the language in the flier that says “the good people of St. Louis County of all races, colors and creeds” as proof that is about just opposing violent protesters and not black residents of the area. The flier also points to a Missouri statute as justification of the right to use lethal force.
Ancona and his chapter of the KKK have made news before in the St. Louis area. Back in May, they passed out fliers in nearby Jefferson County promoting a neighborhood watch program to protect residents from drug dealers. Shortly after Brown’s death, Ancona got into a beef with another KKK leader over a Darren Wilson fundraiser in Missouri. At the time, a South Carolina chapter of the KKK was promoting the fundraiser in Sullivan, MO, roughly 60 miles from Ferguson. Ancona stated that it was a sham and seemed to strike a somewhat moderate stance on the situation in Ferguson. Read on...