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CNN Asks 'Can this KKK leader rebrand?': Of Course Racists Can 'Rebrand' — Check Out the Republican Party

Harper's Weekly cartoon from October 1874 depicting White League and Klan opposition to Reconstruction.
Harper's Weekly cartoon from October 1874 depicting White
League and Klan opposition to Reconstruction. (Illustration
by Thomas Nast)
The writer quotes branding experts who believe "the Klan could change its name, get a smooth-talking spokesperson, replace the robes with suits and take off those ridiculous hats, but underneath, people would recognize its message is the same." However, these branding "experts" seem to be overlooking the success of  the kind of mainstreamed and "acceptable racism" you find on Fox News, in the Tea Party, or among dog whistle blowing "mainstream Republicans." —Ronald David Jackson
By Ashley Fantz
Pointy hats, white robes, crosses burning, bodies hanging from trees.

The images of the Ku Klux Klan are reminders of the nation's ugliest moments from the Civil War through the struggle for racial equality in the 1960s.


Last Sunday, the world was confronted with another image of the Klan: 73-year-old Frazier Glenn Cross, a white supremacist and avowed anti-Semite, in the back of a police car, spitting, "Heil Hitler!"

When his alleged rampage at two Jewish institutions in suburban Kansas City, Kansas, was over, three people were shot dead -- a teenage boy and his grandfather along with a woman who worked with visually impaired children.

The carnage was devastating to many. Imperial Wizard Frank Ancona was upset, too.

"What this guy just did set back everything I've been trying to do for years," said Ancona, who leads the Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.

CNN tracked Ancona down on Twitter, where he has 840 followers, after he and other self-professed hate group leaders denounced the shootings in interviews with USA Today and CNN affiliate WDAF in Kansas City, Missouri.

The carnage was devastating to many. Imperial Wizard Frank Ancona was upset, too.

"What this guy just did set back everything I've been trying to do for years," said Ancona, who leads the Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.

CNN tracked Ancona down on Twitter, where he has 840 followers, after he and other self-professed hate group leaders denounced the shootings in interviews with USA Today and CNN affiliate WDAF in Kansas City, Missouri.

"I believe in racial separation but it doesn't have to be violent," he told CNN. "People in the Klan are professional people, business people, working types. We are a legitimate organization."

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