The Ku Klux Klan has been posting flyers all over Kentucky since March, a frightening sign of how emboldened the far right is becoming.
Kentucky’s Republican attorney general Daniel Cameron, who is also his party’s nominee for governor, has not yet publicly commented on the flyers. Cameron did not respond to The New Republic’s request for comment.
The flyers first started to gain statewide attention in May, when residents of Louisville posted about it on social media. At least two different flyers were left in neighborhoods in and around the city. One warned “race traitors, mixed breeds, communist, homosexuals, and all other walks of Godless degeneracy” that the “Klan is back.” Another flyer referred to multiracial people as “mongrels” and listed Bible quotes to push anti-LGBTQ sentiment.
Things picked up in June, when residents near Lexington reported that another chapter of the KKK had distributed flyers advertising themselves as a sort of neighborhood watch. The flyers encouraged people to report “crime and drug dealers” to the KKK. Lexington NAACP President Whit Whitaker expressed concerns that the Klan intended to use these reports to attack Black people.
Two alleged Klansmen were handing out KKK recruitment cards in Corbin when they crossed paths with an LGBTQ rights rally that was protesting Kentucky’s now-blocked anti-transgender laws. The pair began shouting abuse at the crowd, and one even held up a gun.
The most recent incidents were just last week, when people in Fern Creek and Ashland found KKK flyers spread around their neighborhoods. The flyers in Ashland specifically said the group was seeking to recruit “white-American” citizens who are Christian and at least 18 years old.
The flyers are a clear sign of how brazen far-right groups have become. The Proud Boys have also begun distributing flyers around Kentucky. And it’s no surprise that such extremist organizations feel that they can come out into the open.
Former President Donald Trump vigorously embraced stances against LGBTQ people and people of color, specifically Latin American immigrants and Muslims. He famously told the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by” during a 2020 presidential debate. Members of far-right groups felt Trump had personally called on them to go to Washington on January 6 and stop the 2020 election results from being certified.