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KKK mailing startles association member

By JIM ROSS, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published May 19, 2002

BEVERLY HILLS -- Dick Schnably was shocked last week when he checked his mail at the Beverly Hills Civic Association.

Schnably, the association president, found a one-page flier that had been mailed to the group.

"Good News! The Knights of the Ku Klux Klan is organizing in Beverly Hills!" the headline read.

The flier explained more about the klan and listed a telephone number and Web address.

"My approach is: Just ignore it and it will go away," Schnably said. He said he had heard of at least one other Beverly Hills group receiving an identical flier.

That's probably true, according to Thomas Robb, an Arkansas man who identified himself as national director for the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.

"Yes, we do have associates in the area," Robb told the Times last week during a telephone interview. "I do know they have been in communication about getting some fliers delivered both by the mail and distributed by neighborhoods."

Robb said the material was distributed within the past week to 10 days. He declined to identify the group's local associates.

"Most of these people want to remain private," he said.

Robb said he was aware many people completely oppose his organization's views. "I understand there are some people who don't agree with us. That's their right to do so," he said.

He said the organization doesn't plan to hold any local rallies like a klan gathering held on Courthouse Square in 1990.

"We don't do that much anymore," Robb said. "The Internet has changed everything for us. People can just log onto our Web page very easily in the privacy of their own homes."

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