A Philadelphia man claims he was discriminated against after he was kicked off of his neighborhood watch when he was found to be distributing literature for a “conservative Christian group” to his neighbors.
The group? The East Coast Knights of the True Invisible Empire, a branch of the Ku Klux Klan.
William Walters has lived in Tacony, a neighborhood in northeast Philadelphia, for over 20 years. He’s been a Grand Dragon of the KKK for over 30, Philadelphia Magazine reports.
But Walters’ neighbors were unaware of the affiliation until he began distributing literature in an attempt to draw fresh faces to the infamous hood-wearing group.
“We received information that Bill had been distributing flyers in the neighborhood trying to recruit new members,” Tacony Town Watch president Joe Nicoletti told Philadelphia Magazine.
“And part of our bylaws state that members must promote harmony in the neighborhood, and we all know that harmony is not what the KKK is about,” said Nicoletti.
But Walters is crying foul.
“We are a conservative Christian group,” he claimed. “My rights were infringed upon. I can’t believe in what I want to? This has infringed on my First Amendment rights. It’s reverse discrimination.”
According to Philadelphia Magazine, several lawyers have refused to take on his case. The American Civil Liberties Union also refused to help him. Now he is awaiting a response from the Philadelphia Bar Association.
As most KKK members do, Walters claims that the organization has a bad rap and that it has changed its ways.
“I know we have a bad name, but it’s not that way no more,” he said.
“When was the last time a black or Hispanic got hung on a tree?” asked Walters, whose Facebook contains a number of posts opposing homosexuality and interracial relationships.
If he is unable to find legal representation, Walters said he may take matters into his own hands by forming a town watch with his KKK buddies.
“We’re basically the same thing as the town watch,” Walters told Philadelphia Magazine. “We want to try to get rid of the trash coming in.”