A Date With The Ku Klux Klan

Hit the Road, Jack!

A Date With The KKK

I don’t really know too many people who would be proud enough to date anyone in the Ku Klux Klan. Can you just imagine someone asking you what your boyfriend does for a living and you tell that person that he is a Grand Dragon in the Bayou Knights of the Ku Klux Klan? “Mom, Dad, meet Bubba Stankweed, he’s a Grand Dragon in the KKK!”

But I digress. This isn’t about dating anyone in the KKK. This is about what happens when a bunch of punk rockers meet up with the Bayou Knights of the Ku Klux Klan of Louisiana in downtown Pensacola on a wet Saturday afternoon in May of 1997.

I’d always wanted to go to a KKK protest and I finally got my chance. I’d only seen these clowns in white sheets on television and they just didn’t seem real. Who in their right mind would put on a white sheet and a pointy cap and go around saying stupid ignorant things about people who were different from him? Well, the KKK would, of course. And one of the qualifications of joining the KKK is an unusual IQ test where you must have a score below 80 to become a member!

It was a soggy Saturday afternoon, the rain having just stopped when I pulled up to the courthouse in downtown Pensacola. Across the street from the courthouse was my roommate, Charlie, who stood in his striped long sleeve shirt staring across the street at the white hooded clowns holding KKK and Confederate flags. I saw him and motioned for him to cross the street and join me on the courthouse sidewalk to see what the KKK was up to in our little city.

Why were these idiots here? Did they think they would be successful at recruiting new members? There weren’t more than 50 or so protesters who showed up, although I heard so many punks the night before at the show talking about how they were going to be there setting up anti KKK booths and protesting. Unfortunately, few of them actually showed up.

My curiosity got the best of me and I walked up to the KKK table and got their application and info. Ninety nine percent of the others who walked up to the table took the information out of curiosity to find out what their modus operandi was, not to actually join. The literature talked about how they didn’t hate anyone. Yeah, right. No one wanted to join that ridiculous group. This was 1997, not 1918’s Birth of a Nation. Most of the KKKers looked so angry, so bitter, full of hatred. You could see it on their faces and the way they stood. One guy in particular stood out from all the others. This guy was full of hatred but I really think he hated himself more than anything. He wasn’t wearing your typical KKK fashion, but a white t-shirt with the KKK emblem, tight jeans and cowboy boots. He fit the skinhead description all the way down to his low IQ and belligerent expression. I just chuckled to myself because I knew how much his anger was destroying him inside.

A few city cops milled around, hands clasping their gun belts, thumbs slipped inside their waistbands, scanning the crowd for trouble. Both groups were behaving themselves. People on both sides were videotaping. I tried to cover my face when the KKK pointed their video cameras at me but gave up after a few minutes. I took pictures of them and they took pictures of us. I continued chatting with some punks and my roommate.

I was curious and decided to ask the hooded drones some questions. I asked one of them how he kept his hat so pointy. His answer? “Bein’ white.” Well there you go! That makes sense! His white head is pointy! Then I inquired as to how they obtained their sheets, asking if they had to make them themselves or did they purchase them from special KKK stores. I got no answer. I was just trying to irritate them. They weren’t really allowed to say much. The Grand Dragon was the spokesperson of the whole buffoonish group and the peons had to keep their mouths shut. Probably because the Grand Dragon was afraid one of them might say something stupid. His fear was justified.

All of a sudden I heard a guy’s voice shouting and turn around to see a young man about 16 with a Dead Kennedys “No Nazis” t-shirt on walk right in the middle of all the hooded buffoons and confront them! Everyone turned around to watch him. The news cameras immediately focused in on this young guy. He had no fear. I certainly wouldn’t have gotten in the middle of the KKK members and confronted them the way he did. His name was Alistair and he stepped right in the middle of them and said, “I just want to have a conversation with you about your beliefs. I’m only 16 years old and I can’t hurt you so why won’t you talk to me and tell us why you are here?

The hooded protesters just stood there and stared, a few chuckled and made remarks under their breath to other drones. The crowd of protesters was quiet, waiting to see what would happen next, inching closer to the KKK. The cops moved closer too, anticipating something might happen.

Alistair then raised his voice, aggravated that they wouldn’t respond and said, “Well if you won’t have a conversation with me then why don’t you just get the hell out of Pensacola!” We all started yelling at this point, clapping and cheering him on. They certainly weren’t having much success recruiting new members to their “club.” They came to the wrong city.

Still, they did not respond to Alistair and seemed a bit surprised that a teenager would stand in the middle of them all and confront them, calling them on their obvious racial hatred. The hoods stood with their flags and drooping white robes, sweating in the humidity of an early Saturday afternoon. Occasionally they’d glance at each other and chuckle.

Ten minutes later, the KKK started packing up their “gear” and slowly wobbled back to their vans, their wet outfits waving in the afternoon breeze. It was obvious they were trying to play it cool and make it seem like they were just leaving because it was time to go, but we knew they would have stayed longer had we not begun to give them a piece of our minds. We followed them, telling them to go home and never come back to Pensacola again. Some protesters began calling them cowards, giving them the finger and pointing video cameras into the KKK's vans. Other protesters began knocking on their vehicles' window glass. The cops told us to get away from the KKK demonstrators and let them leave. It seemed to me that they were getting a little nervous that we were getting more and more agitated after Alistair confronted them in the way that he did.

A lesson was taught and that was to stay out of our town. It’s been over five years since the Bayou Knights came to town and I think they got the message they weren’t wanted here. We might be small and we might be southern, but that doesn’t mean we are all racist backwards hicks who drive around in four-wheel drive trucks with Confederate flags. And it was empowering to see them leave with their tails between their legs. Since that warm May afternoon in 1997, I have yet to see another KKK rally in Pensacola. I think we taught them a lesson – that we didn’t need their backwards, ignorant ideas in our city and for them to stay the hell out.


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Comments 18 comments

kiki 6 years ago

Thank you!


Mikio profile image

Mikio 5 years ago

Thank you. You're right. Those young men who choose to join the Neo Nazi group do suffer from low self-esteem. I really enjoyed reading your description of the KKK rally in your hometown.


Kalon Reeves 5 years ago

I'm no fan of the KKK myself, but it just sounds to me like you and your friends just demonstrated for them who is capable of behaving in a civil manner and who is not.

All you did is make yourselves the epitome of everything you accuse them of being. An ill mannered, racist, unruly, violent mob.

Real nice going.


hurrrrr 5 years ago

@Kalon;

No. Wherever the KKK goes, a stigma follows. The public all of a sudden tends to lean towards the belief that if the KKK is able to hold a rally somewhere, the citizens of the city MUST be okay with them. These people just didn't want them to leave a stain. Though they shouldn't have gotten physical, I don't think they got too far out of line.


reallity 5 years ago

everywhere you look in the u.s. you see more and more all black schools,negro college funds and so on. i dare anyone to try and open an all white only school and see what happens to it and you. open your eyes people...


Trailer Trash profile image

Trailer Trash 5 years ago from Pensacola Author

Kalon Reeves: No one who protested the KKK rally got violent in any way with the KKK members. Not one of us was violent, nor did we have a mob mentality. Nowhere in my writing did I state we got violent with the KKK members.


Charlie 4 years ago

Kalon is correct, and is every bit as much on target as the fellow Alistair who is mentioned in the story.

Both of them are pointing out intolerance.


Robby Bubble 4 years ago

It's so ridiculous,

I don`t know how American guys can become Neo Nazis...

Nazis were German so in my mind only a German can be a real Nazi,

The German real Nazis hated the Americans, how can American people get Neonazis then?

It's so so ridiculous!


josh lamb 4 years ago

im no kkk member although i have been thinking about looking into it. i am from south arkasas and have never really been racist. for the last couple of years i have seen so much that's going wrong and yes it is the blacks. everything is made to make them happy. our justice, education, and wellfair system is all for blacks. whites cant get hardly anything anymore from the government. now i guess im a backwoods hick or whatever it was you said because i do drive a 4x4 truck, and yes i do hunt, fish, and live in the woods. i also have a wife, 2 kids, my own home, and land. my home is very clean. there is no trash in my yard. myself, wife, and kids, are all groomed very well, but whatever. we tried to get my 4 year old son into pre-school this past Aug. there were openings but guess what..... my son is white. thay had to save the last few openings for black kids, so that thay could meet the governments requirments. there are still 2 openings at that school, but only for blacks. government requirments such as this one i have stated are due to blind people like yourself. i assume you are one of those libral people who believe that it is a crime to be white. dude i cant even take my family to a movie after dark here because of how the blacks act. i wish things were diff, but thay are not. i hope my retared backwoods hick redneck words didn't blow your mind. just so you know i am also a disabled combat veteran, and a collage grad. so maybe a few of us hicks from the mid-south, where there is a serious black vs white problem do have some sense.....

thank you for your time

p.s. yes robby bubble... i myself do not understand the whole neonazi thing either. those folks are a discrase to all of our troops from ww2, and to this country


FJS 4 years ago

I understand that the KKK is a bunch of Idiots in sheets. But have any of you noticed the fact the white race is dying out world wide? we have abortions and no children we breed with blacks and mexicans. They portray our race as weak and uncool while they prop up mexicans and blacks. If you stand proud of your race as a white man your told your a racist but wait a black man can say and make jokes about whites and all is fine. We have been traied as whites to feel guilty over slavery which was wrong by the way. Slavery was never good for anyone but being proud of being white and not interbreeding is not racist it makes sense. You dont here black parents encouraging there kids to date whites now do you? But if a white man says dont date out of your race in oreder to preserve your heritage your labled a racist..


Michael 4 years ago

"Other protesters began banging on their vehicles' window glass." - sounds like a violent mob to me. That's why the cops are there. If they weren't, we all know there would be a lot more than just window banging or finger pointing. It's funny how the Klan are accused of being "violent" when it's always the "peaceful" protesters who behave like animals and ended up causing civil unrest and getting arrested.

America is the land of freedom of speech, you can either can used to that, or get the hell out yourself. The minute you hit a Klansman because you "hate him" or his political, racial or whatever views, you are no better than him and in fact, un-American for infringing someone's right to freedom of speech.

Oh, and by the way, not everyone that flies a Confederate flag and drives a pick-up truck are racist, let alone Klan members. I find that remark itself racist, small minded and stereotypical. If you visit kkk.com, the first flag you will see is an American flag, not a Confederate. Ironic how people turn a blind eye to it and only focus negativity on our noble Southern flag.


Momasboy 4 years ago

YOU MUST BE MOTHER FUCKING CRAZY. WHY WOULD SOMEONE WANT TO DATE THE KU KLUX KLAN? BESIDES BURNING CROSSES ON PEOPLE'S LAWN, DRAGGING DEATH OF JAMES BYRD IN JASPER, TEXAS, WHO WOULD REWARD THE KU KLUX KLAN WITH LOVE.

ALL GOD FEARING PEOPLE SHOULD KNOW THOSE KU KLUX KLAN MEMBERS ARE GOING TO THE SAME HELL AS HISPANIC KILLERS, A MIDDLE EASTRERN MUSLIM, OR A BLACK KILLERS WILL GO TO.

BECAUSE YOU ARE WHITE, DOESN'T MAKE YOU MORE IMPORTANT! THINK ABOUT IT. A WHITE KID, T.J. LANE, WHO KILLED 3 STUDENTS ON FEBRUARY 28, 2012, IN CHARDON, OHIO, TO GO ALONG WITH ANOTHER ONE ABOUT ONE YEAR BEFORE WHERE JARED LOUGHNER OF TUSCON, AZ, KILLED 6, AND ALSO SHOT CONGRESSWOMAN GIFFORD. YOU ARE INSINUATING THAT THESE 2 WHITE KILLERS WILL BE DANCING WITH JESUS, GOD, MOSES, AND THE APOSTLES BECAUSE THEY ARE WHITE, EVEN THOUGH THEY'VE BROKEN GOD'S COMMANDMENTS.

BEING BLACK, I KNOW NOT TO FUCK WITH YOU PEOPLE, AS YOUR LAST PARAGRAPH INDICATES, YOU HAVE THOSE PICK UP TRUCKS AND CONFEDERATE FLAGS, WANTING TO RESTORE THE CONFEDERACY, WHEN BLACKS WERE SLAVES AND YOU WERE MASTERS.

SLAVERY IS OVER, AND I AM NOT PLAYING WITH THOSE RACISTS ATTITUDES, THOSE RACISTS WHITES WHO CALL BLACKS NIGGER, TARBABIES, SPOOKS, AUNT JEMIMAS, COLORED, ALL OF THE RACISTS INSULTS.

JUST WANTED TO PUT MY TWO CENTS IN ON THE MATTER, AND IF YOU THINK I WOULD DATE RACISM, YOU HAVE TO BE CRAZY, LIKE YOUR MENTAL HEALTH DIAGNOSIS SUCH AS BIPOLAR, SCHIZOPHRENIA, ETC., INDICATE YOU PEOPLE ARE!


Levertis Steele profile image

Levertis Steele 4 years ago from Southern Clime

Sometimes "Silence is golden." I think you could have gotten the same results without saying anything to the KKK because the victory was in your hands before they came to town. Righteousness always brings on the victor, though it is sometimes late.


kmarty 4 years ago

I've always wanted to ask a KKK member this. Except for minor bone structure shapes, all human bodies are exactly the same inside, if your KKK child needed an immediate blood transfusion or heart transplant to live, would you accept this help from a minority donor such as someone who's black or Hispanic?

If yes, would the new heart or blood x-fusion make you hate your child because some of the internal material used to save a life came from a minorities donation?

If no, would you let your child die?

By the way emergency whole blood transfusions are given without knowledge of the race donor.

Did you know that anyone who has been in a hospital for an operation most likely received some blood donated from numerous races of people. Most transfused blood comes from minorities selling this fluid. Does blood donated from a black person in your body suddenly make you black? ... and if so are you now hated by the rest of your Klan? Your outside skin isn't black but some of your blood inside is. Same question about an organ transplant like a heart or kidney donated by a minority. And the KKK answer would be?


Trailer Trash profile image

Trailer Trash 4 years ago from Pensacola Author

Momasboy - no one is requiring that you date anyone who is a racist. My comment regarding "dating" someone in the KKK was rhetorical. Please go back and read the article instead of getting all upset and typing in capital letters. The article is not, by any means, a pro-KKK piece. Maybe you have misunderstood something you read. I wish you all the best.


B-Dawg 3 years ago

Trailer Trash,

If the KKK were smart they would get a black spray tan and instead of hiding behind white sheets they would hide behind black faces. You could do more damage to the blacks disguised as a black person. Black on black crime stays under the radar. The police could get all those black thugs off the streets better if they were blackfaced without dealing with racial politics. Black faced Bosses could fire lazy black employees without dealing with racial politics. The only way to beat a negro is to be a negro. PEace.


Maxmillion 3 years ago

That Alistair guy was a cool bro. "Duh dragons" came to the wrong hood muthafucka!


AmericanAmerican 3 years ago

The Klan is full of cowards. The thing is they are uneducated, poor and ridiculous cowards. They will never be an issue because the real KKK organization has become something else entirely. The KKK was a vehicle. There used to be real power held by the organization, now there are a few hillbillies who glorify the history of a long dead organization. Klansmen tend to be obese, dumb and low lives. They are the white version of what they oppose in other cultures. They live in broken down trashy trailers and the ones that have homes live in an extreme state of squalor. They are "victims" of something or another and believe that the "white man" is under attack. Instead of being smart and addressing wealthy whites who run this country, they are mad at people of other cultures even though there are similarities between the social standings and issues of the people they tend to hate. Whites are worried that their "race" is becoming extinct. Funny thing is these idiots don't seem to understand that A. There is no such thing as race. B. This isn't Europe. C. This land was stolen from brown people (non "whites"). If you believe in the superiority of a so called white race that is really a culturally diverse people of many ethnic makeups, that's for you to believe. You are a coward, a victim and should learn to live as an individual as opposed to lumping yourself into a category that shouldn't have any relevance anyhow. I'm mixed, I'm smart, I'm employed. Born in the USA by parents born in the USA and their parents were Americans as well. This is MY country just as much as it's and coward in sheets country. Stop crying and complaining and find an identity. That goes to all the so called "races".

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