(Memphis) The NAACP wants everyone to stay home when the Ku Klux Klan comes to town.
If the group’s permit is approved, the KKK plans to rally downtown Saturday, March 30th.
The Memphis president of the NAACP, Keith Norman, says the KKK has the right to rally but he hopes nobody will show up to witness it, “Don’t even give the Klan an audience. That is the best thing we can do.”
Norman says he doesn’t take it personally that the KKK is planning to rally in Memphis and he hopes other people don’t pay them much mind either, “We want to encourage the citizens of Memphis to take a peaceful approach as to how we respond to such actions.”
The last time the KKK marched in Memphis it was 1998 and riots broke out.
Police had to use pepper spray and tear gas and downtown suffered broken windows and thousands of dollars’ worth of damage.
This time, the NAACP is asking for people to “peacefully resist” the Klan by not being present and staying home. Basically, don’t give the white supremacy group any power.
“The Klan is a declining organization in the United States of America and they do not have the strength and the presence that they once had,” said Norman.
The KKK says it plans to gather in Memphis to protest the city’s renaming of three parks with confederate ties.
One of them, the Nathan Bedford Forrest Park, named after a civil war general who was the first KKK grand wizard.
Surprisingly to some, Norman says he shares the view that the park names should remain the same, “We believe that history should be kept as history.”
But he says that’s about all he has in common with the KKK, “They have no other message other than hate and divisiveness.”
The KKK filed for a permit Friday to rally at the chancery court on Adams. News Channel 3 will let you know if and when the City approves it.