KKK wants ACLU help to adopt highway
A Ku Klux Klan chapter wants to clean a stretch of Georgia State Route 515 in Union County, but its application was rejected Tuesday.
June 14th, 2012
06:00 PM ET

KKK wants ACLU help to adopt highway

By Mariano Castillo and Melissa Abbey, CNN

(CNN) - Having been denied participation in Georgia's adopt-a-highway program, a local Ku Klux Klan chapter has turned to the American Civil Liberties Union for help. And the civil rights organization may represent the group.

"We are considering next steps and whether or not we will support the group," said Debbie Seagraves, executive director for the ACLU of Georgia.

"We know this is unpopular," she admits, but if her organization helps the International Keystone Knights of the KKK, it is not because it agrees with their beliefs. It will be based on legal precedent and a legal view of whether the KKK's freedom of speech has been violated.

In a nearly identical case in Missouri in 2005, a court ruled that the state discriminated against the KKK by denying it participation in a program open to all organizations.

Read the full story

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Filed under: Discrimination • Race • Where we live
soundoff (60 Responses)
  1. Danny T

    Because they're the only ones who truly work and hold jobs in the middle class......unlike you hippie idiot yuppies who produce and spout nothing but garbage.

    June 18, 2012 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
  2. VVVV

    It's a shame that anything unpopular has to fight for it's rights of free speech. So many people don't really believe in the 1st amendment.

    June 18, 2012 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
  3. equality4allbutwhites

    How about an article explainig the 1 million new mexican-americans who now have more rights than white people. Protected status means they get affirmative action preference for college admissions, jobs, government contracts

    June 17, 2012 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Luis Arevalo

      No I am an American of Mexican descent, and citizen, and trust me when I say that there will be no amnesty for students. Obama just wants the votes and he's already said that he is not passing anything, until he is voted president again. Romney is really the only way to go.

      June 18, 2012 at 5:16 am | Report abuse |
      • Yulia

        Christian Bultmann (14:30:00) :300,000 people is uftortunane but a small number in consideration that millions die every year caused by ill-conceived environmental politics. Regrettably, there is NO connection between ANY symptom of actual global warming (today's 1/4 of one degree rise since 1970) and ANY excessive deaths.(Higher deaths from higher temperatures (in summer, even if 1/4 of one degree can actually be tracked into a heat wave death incident) are more than offset by reduced deaths in winter due to higher (average) winter temperatures.More CO2? 12% to 27% MORE plant growth, more food, fuel, fodder, fuel, and feasts. More growing season? Fewer deaths.More area available to plant? Fewer deaths.Sea level rise? Not measureable. Can't kill someone from a 2 mm rise!Droughts? No, not from global warming. Tornadoes? No. Fewer tornadoes recently. Fewer hurricanes also. Real world = Less storms recently. Fewer actual deaths. Now, I will grant that KOFI murdered 300,000 people through HIS starvation and DDT-restrictions and conversion of fuel and food into ethanol and higher taxes and higher oil charges and higher food prices and economic losses CAUSED by HIS (and the democrat's) fears of AGW ..

        October 13, 2012 at 7:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • DT

      Exactly, this is how Obama is building his socialist power base for himself and future democrats to create their socialist society.

      June 18, 2012 at 4:16 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Peperosso

    I don't know why theres so much complaining going on, let them have their piece of highway to clean, if I lived there I would be dumping all of my garbage on that highway....

    June 17, 2012 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Just Passin' Though

      You made my day.

      June 18, 2012 at 2:25 am | Report abuse |
  5. Jesus

    The ten poorest states in our country are all republican. Many of those states also coincide with the least educated. Why are these people allowed to vote?

    June 17, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Evan

      Because we live in a representative democracy.

      June 17, 2012 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • deano

      Why are illegals allowed to vote? Or pay less to go to college?

      June 17, 2012 at 6:34 pm | Report abuse |
      • Luis Arevalo

        since when are illegals allowed to vote?

        June 18, 2012 at 5:16 am | Report abuse |
  6. Jesus

    Southern republicans are smart.

    June 17, 2012 at 12:15 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Sunshine100

    The KKK a client of the ACLU? That's hutzpah and a huge dose of irony. Life is never dull.

    June 17, 2012 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
  8. Tom

    The ACLU hates Christians and the KKK hates Catholics. They should get along just fine.

    June 17, 2012 at 11:37 am | Report abuse |
    • Salad Spinner

      I hate both, what does that make me?

      June 18, 2012 at 8:58 am | Report abuse |
  9. Everett Wallace

    KKK if you want to name the strip after yourselves and keep it clean they are the only group that can do this. final word.

    June 17, 2012 at 8:33 am | Report abuse |
  10. Tristen Cruz

    I'd love to see how many free speech backers on this comment list would support the Taliban or Al Qaida asking to clean up a highway and get their name on the freeway sign. And before you say it, yes, there are American Taliban/Al Qaida operatives.

    June 17, 2012 at 5:44 am | Report abuse |
  11. Nat Johanson

    People, I beg you, please use spell check or a dictionary and punctuation! It looks as if only 3rd graders comment on these discussion boards.

    June 17, 2012 at 1:44 am | Report abuse |
  12. krisfehr13

    I hope so but stupid seems to stick around along time. They keep brainwashing their children and stupid people have the most children.

    June 16, 2012 at 11:42 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Solo

    I'm well aware that I have access to Black media – but it's insulting that they make such a point to separate themselves as a race and at the same time, want to be included when the checks are cut. That was the point, which you missed. Take a typing course and buy a dictionary before showing up here, please. Maybe you can surf the Internet to find out how to download some common sense for yourself as well. Good luck.

    June 16, 2012 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse |
  14. burgos

    dont be fooled by this hateful coalition,open up pondora's box and see what happends

    June 16, 2012 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • amused123

      MAYBE, we'll all get a better education; it's Pandora's Box. There this site called "let me google that for you."/

      June 16, 2012 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Black America

    Can't wait to see some klans men, they should look for help at the NRA rather than the ACLU

    June 16, 2012 at 6:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • raptor57

      i guess we are only allowed to have black hate groups in this country

      June 17, 2012 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
      • deano

        There should be absolutely NO hate groups in this country.......sometimes it seems as free speech has gotten a little out of hand. I am all for everyone speaking thier mind,but using a little common sense and self-control would be a welcome respite from the vitriol we hear constantly from everyone with a microphone.

        June 17, 2012 at 6:41 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jamann

        The minute we say that free speech has gotten out of the hand is the minute we decide that something needs to be done about it. The minute we say that something needs to be done about it is the minute we start saying that not all speech should be allowed. The minute we say that all speech should not be allowed is the minute we lose our 1st amendment right.

        The 1st amendment covers ALL speech. That includes speech that you do not like or agree with. Who the hell are you to decide that Americans should no longer have free speech? You can go to hell.

        June 17, 2012 at 9:05 pm | Report abuse |
  16. My cat

    Well, that was in reply to someone else's comment, but it looks like it got taken down. Thank you CNN.

    June 16, 2012 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Milton

    Not being able to adopt a highway is not a violation of free speech. In what way does this prevent this group or any other group from saying what is on their mind?

    June 16, 2012 at 5:44 pm | Report abuse |
  18. babooph

    They can adopt Penn ave,but they will NEVER be of any importance in the US again.

    June 16, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Paratrooper_us

      That is assuming that they were ever of any importance.

      June 18, 2012 at 8:07 am | Report abuse |
  19. rockyjessup

    Dang, we are satisfied with ourselves, aren't we? You'll go blind with that kind of self love.

    June 16, 2012 at 7:04 am | Report abuse |
    • nicely written

      at first glance, too long, but I read it, it was well written and enjoyable

      June 16, 2012 at 9:55 am | Report abuse |
  20. BT

    You either support free speech or you don't. To deny any group because YOUR beliefs differs from theirs is discrimination, plain & simple. So don't try to defend YOUR group or cause & then deny someone EQUAL rights. How many of YOU, of any race, party affiliation, or gender bias like Westboro (church?) appearing at soldiers funerals, spewing hate? Not many, right? But the courts have ruled THEY have equal rights. Nuff said.

    June 16, 2012 at 4:23 am | Report abuse |
    • Alex santarelli

      Freedom of speech is one thing. Having the KKK sponsor a street with their brand on it is another thing. They spread Hate, and killed my people for a very long time for no other reason than color. They Still Hate allowing them to place their brand will only spread and advertise their hate even more. ACLU. Will lose all credibility if they do this.

      June 16, 2012 at 4:59 am | Report abuse |
      • Moiphy

        Not permitting them is violating their rights. If the ACLU helps it's because of that not because they agree with the Klan's policies. Haven't you ever see a channel with the comment.....The views expressed during this show are not the views of the network. Same thing. "I may disagree with what you"re saying, but I will defend to the death your right to say it."

        June 16, 2012 at 7:18 am | Report abuse |
      • Moiphy

        I left out, they will have to add an addendum to the first ammendment. "Cept the Klan"

        June 16, 2012 at 7:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Aaron

      First of all why should it be up to you or anyone else to dictate what is and is not acceptable free speach? Just because there are other ways of expressing themselves doesn't mean that those are the only things that they can choose from. And your two o'clock in the morning argument is a bogus argument unless the city allows other groups to protest at 2 am. If you're going to allow one group to do something, such as adopting a highway, then you have to allow all groups to do it.

      June 16, 2012 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Bubba Rydel

    Finally somebody is coming to their aid. These kids have been kicked around long enough.

    June 16, 2012 at 12:31 am | Report abuse |
    • BT

      I HOPE that was sarcasm.

      June 16, 2012 at 4:25 am | Report abuse |
      • poor Klan

        the disadvantaged of our culture, misunderstood teddy bears

        only want the best for each and every individual, really a shinning beacon of good intentions

        they just want a hug

        June 16, 2012 at 9:53 am | Report abuse |
  22. Jimmie3000

    If someone want to clean up a highway that the state cannot afford to clean, let them... This isn't about color or race, it's about cleaning a highway. The only reason this stuff matters is because people let race cloud their judgement... We are all human can't we just all be a part of the human race?

    June 15, 2012 at 4:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • michael

      Jimmie, "adopt a highway" cleanup programs involve granting the sponsoring body recognition via posted signs. I have no trouble seeing why Georgia officials hesitated to heap public thanks on the KKK. Why do you?

      June 15, 2012 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
      • BT

        Equal rights & protections under the law. Think Westboro (church?)

        June 16, 2012 at 4:30 am | Report abuse |
    • Alex santarelli

      I am not letting race cloud my judgment . It's that I do not want to see a sign saying sponsored by the KKK on the side of the road I might be traveling on. And no person of color nor anyone with an ouce of dignity would want to drive let alone walk along that road.

      June 16, 2012 at 5:05 am | Report abuse |
      • Paratrooper_us

        It is a small sign – who really reads them? Odds are that the sign will never stay up unscathed for longer than 24 hours at a time.

        I do not agree with what the KKK stands for, in fact I despise it; BUT, if other Hate Organizations are permitted to exist and be recognized, then they have the right as well. I have yet to see the KKK stand guard at a Voters Poll location, trying to intimidate voters – yet.

        June 18, 2012 at 8:13 am | Report abuse |
  23. DefyTheGods

    No of of The Klan, but they've got as much right as anyone.

    June 15, 2012 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Clean your own house first

      They can clean as much as they want to. But the state of Georgia doesn't have to support or recognize any efforts. Of course, this means that the Klan won't clean since they're only aim is publicity.

      June 15, 2012 at 8:38 pm | Report abuse |
      • Alex santarelli


        June 16, 2012 at 5:06 am | Report abuse |
  24. Eagle

    The First amendment protects UNPOPULAR speech (popular speech doesn't need protection)

    I may strongly disagree with what the Tea party...err uh KKK, says, but unlike them I'll fight for your right to say it.

    June 15, 2012 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Alex santarelli

      You need to do your research of the tea party. There are members of many different races in th at party including myself. Aligning me with the KKK is like aligning a kitten with a snake. I am native american, French canadian, and Afrian American, and VERY proud of it.

      June 16, 2012 at 5:10 am | Report abuse |
      • TV

        I think the TP has been co-opted by the racists and moneyed interests. There may be people like you, who consider themselves in line with the TP. Consider that three out of the five top TP leaders are also "birthers". Where was the TP when Bush II and the republicans were drowning the country in debt? Silent as sheep in a lush pasture. Now that a "black man" (he is only half black) has taken office, they are all upset and want to get rid of him while he tries to clean up the mess left to him by their hero.

        June 16, 2012 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
      • Paratrooper_us

        @CNN Posters Are Full Of Derp – Dems only consider what goes against their wants as a Violation of Free Speech

        June 18, 2012 at 8:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Matthew

      You, sir or madame, or a complete and total imbecile on the subject of politics. Tea Party equates to KKK? In what alternate universe do you reside?

      June 17, 2012 at 9:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • DT

      No Eagle, you don't have the backbone to defend someone else's free speech or any freedoms for that matter because you are probably some fat retard sitting behind a keyboard spouting your anti-republican crappe all day long. It's folks like me who have/are/will serve in our Armed Forces that do that. Your talk is nothing but hot air – just like what fills your idiot empty skull.

      June 18, 2012 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
  25. serveJBR

    poetic, what else to say?

    June 15, 2012 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
  26. deborah

    God created all people to hate any hate then you must hate God who created all race stop being the devil servant and live in peace with all people Life is to short

    June 15, 2012 at 2:33 am | Report abuse |
    • jaman

      Punctuation. Learn to love it.

      June 17, 2012 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
      • Tom

        Try paying attention to her message, not her lack of punctuation. Condescending fool.

        June 17, 2012 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |