Our VoiceNews & Politics

Keep the Klan Kleaning

Rev. David L. Ostendorf • Jun 24, 2009

Just when you thought that the Klan had been swept away by the tidal wave of racist anti-immigrant activity across the nation (that is, by the “mainstream” groups that stole the anti-immigrant mantra from under the hood) the robed warriors of the Springfield, Missouri area’s National Socialist Movement have once again triumphed in their abiding commitment to keep America clean.

A half-mile of roadsides outside Springfield will still be the Klan’s to clean in the adopt-a-highway program, complete (we presume) with a nice rainbow sign denoting their obligation. Naturally, Missouri officials have never been too supportive of the idea, but they lost that battle some time ago in the courts. Their most recent efforts to undercut the Klan by renaming the stretch of highway after the venerable Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, an icon of American theology and human rights, was kindly but firmly declined by Rabbi Heschel’s esteemed daughter, Susannah. Her decision should be deeply respected.

This is not the first time the Klan and other equally nefarious groups have sought to take advantage of such a public program in order to advance their “image,” as if it could be “advanced.” As before, we believe the Klan ought to be afforded this opportunity. After all, the roadsides do need cleaning, and the Klan might as well do it as anyone else… better to keep them busy picking up trash than purveying it. In fact, we would propose helping the Klan uphold its commitment.

All the good people of Missouri (and visitors!) have to do is drive along the Klan’s stretch of adopted roadside and dump all their trash out the windows of their vehicles: it’s the Keep the Klan Kleaning Kampaign!! While we certainly don’t advocate littering or trash dumping, this may be the exception to the rule—a little low-level civil disobedience to keep the law-abiding neo-Nazis occupied, as is their wish. It would be a great story, and the photographs would be wonderful! A half-mile of trashed-out highway. Huffing and puffing Klansmen laden with their trash-filled plastic bags. Well-wishers cheering them on!! Law enforcement idly keeping watch. It could become the most famous stretch of highway in America.

Maybe the good folk of Missouri have already tried this. If so, kudos. If not, best wishes. Keep the Klan Kleaning!

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