A Much Smaller KKK Still Rides

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Ku Klux Klan members parade in Washington, D.C., during the 1920s, a decade in which Klan membership grew into the millions and the group exerted significant political influence. Library of Congress.

By JAY REEVES
Associated Press

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) – The Ku Klux Klan is trying to make a comeback and reshape itself for a new era.

The white supremacist organization was born in the defeated South after the Civil War. It’s 150 years old and has been in decline for decades.

Yet Associated Press interviews with Klan leaders show the group is still alive and dreams of restoring itself to what it once was: an invisible empire spreading throughout society.

Watchdog groups estimate total Klan membership at only a few thousand nationwide, and some scoff at the idea of a Klan resurgence. There’s no single Klan, and different Klan groups disagree over tactics and philosophy.

But Klan leaders say they feel U.S. politics are going their way as a nationalist, us-against-them mentality deepens among some across the nation.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

 

The Montgomery-Headquartered Southern Poverty Law Center includes the KKK on a list of extremist organizations.

Categories: News, Statewide