The Ku Klux Klan targeted transgender people in fliers littering a metro Atlanta neighborhood, calling them “freaks,” an “abomination” and saying they threaten the safety of bathrooms.
The fliers, tucked inside plastic bags with pebbles, were left at homes in the Towne Lake Hills South subdivision in Woodstock on Wednesday. The Loyal White Knights, a KKK chapter based in Pelham, N.C., created the fliers – similar to the offensive propaganda pieces the group left in Douglas County in June and neighborhoods in Atlanta and Rockdale County in 2015.
“Transgender is an abomination according to the Kings James Bible,” the flier reads. “These freaks are jeopardizing the safety of bathrooms all across the nation for our women and children. This needs to stop.”
The flier – like the ones distributed in June – then suggests that if transgender people are confused, they should commit suicide by using “a tree out in the back yard.”
A KKK spokesperson told the AJC that the organization uses the fliers as a recruitment tool. They contain a KKK hotline and website that accepts donations.
“If this individual has a hard time explaining that there’s a group of people that believe in what they believe in … then that problem lies within that household. That household has fallen victim to what society says is right and wrong,” [John] Roberts said.
The Loyal White Knights are based in North Carolina, which is at the center of the transgender bathroom debate.
He explained that leaving those specific anti-transgender fliers on driveways is the Klan's recent method of recruiting people.
“They expect … the entire stereotype, 'some dumb, hillbilly redneck with three teeth in his head' … when a lot of us are not like that at all,” he said.
It's not the first time the KKK has distributed its offensive fliers in the area, according to the Cherokee Tribune & Ledger-News.
“This is not the first time someone has done this,” [sheriff’s office spokesman Lt. Jay] Baker said. “Their method of operation seems to be the same. They always have a piece of paper in a little plastic bag with a rock inside the bag. They occasionally target driveways in different areas of the county.”
But Gary Parkes, who noticed the fliers and provided them to media outlets, said he's surprised the KKK left the fliers. Via Woodstock Patch:
It is 2016, my neighbors and I awoke to KKK flyers on our driveways targeting transgender people. I have lived in Georgia for 19 years and this is the first time I have seen anything like this. No one was specifically targeted as it appeared on all the driveways in the subdivision; however, members of the KKK are driving through my subdivision soliciting members, action, money and the like.
I live here with my children. I know hatred is everywhere, as is good, but this was mind-blowing. Again, I live here with my children. Shouldn't at least our homestead be a safe haven. Shouldn't my kids be able to walk to the bus stop in 2016 without stumbling past this hate?
The anti-LGBT fliers come as transgender issues have ignited a rebuke from conservatives in Georgia and North Carolina, where the Loyal White Knights is based. In March, Gov. Pat McCrory signed into law a measure in North Carolina that gutted an LGBT-inclusive non-discrimination ordinance passed in Charlotte, prevented any city in the state from passing similar measures, and banned transgender people from using restrooms that correspond to their gender identity.
A national controversy erupted, the state took an economic hit and McCrory is likely to lose his re-election bid.
In Georgia, conservatives started potty wars over transgender students as the state joined a lawsuit seeking to block U.S. Department of Education issued guidelines instructing schools nationwide that they are expected to allow transgender students to use bathrooms and other facilities that align with their gender identity.
School districts across the state – including Fannin, Gwinnett and Hall counties – have refused to follow the guidelines, while conservative lawmakers decried them as federal overreach and the state school superintendent promised a brawl. Meanwhile, trans students described the difficulties they face in school, some Atlanta-based companies are taking the lead on trans bathroom access, Atlanta schools welcomed the federal guidance and trans students have a tool to fight back.