And here’s just what Idaho doesn’t need: racist pranksters.
The evidence suggests that some cross-burning comics have been sending out Ku Klux Klan membership applications to Idaho legislators. An article in Tuesday’s Statesman focused on Boise Democratic Rep. Cherie Buckner-Webb, the Legislature’s lone African-American, who received this junk mail.
The sinister implication is that Buckner-Webb was targeted because of her race, and the first-term lawmaker believes she was singled out. But that may not be the case, although I’m not sure I’d call that a good thing: Similar letters went to other lawmakers, with little regard for party, politics or race.
Sadly, because of the neo-Nazi racists that (temporarily) set up high-profile shop in Idaho, these mailings are apt to receive outsized national attention. That’s not just unfortunate for Idaho; in this case, it’s flat-out unfair. The letter to Buckner-Webb had a Harrison, Ark., return address and a Great Falls, Mont., postmark. Idaho shouldn’t have to own the actions of other states’ nutjobs.
You know things are bad when even the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan is distancing itself from this hatedrop. In an interview with the Moscow-Pullman Daily News, national director Thomas Robb said his group had nothing to do with the mailings.
“That’s a standard piece of literature that is duplicated quite regularly,” he said. “We have members do that, we have supporters do that. Sometimes we have people who aren’t members or supporters that do that because they think it’s funny.”
Right. Because nothing says comedy quite like a membership form from the KKK.
In a state where the vast majority of residents abhor the racism — and where political leaders, Republicans and Democrats alike, have worked hard to try to restore Idaho’s good name and reputation — this “joke” is about as unfunny as it gets.