- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 11, 2020

A pair of online petitions seeking to outlaw the Ku Klux Klan and designate the KKK to be a terrorist organization each neared their goal Thursday of garnering a million signatures.

Each of the petitions, which both appear on Change.org, has been digitally autographed hundreds of thousands of times within days of being added to the website earlier this month.

One of the petitions, titled “Make the KKK illegal,” asks Congress to outright prohibit the hate group, citing its long, ongoing history of physical assaults and murders. It has been signed more than 740,000 times in roughly a week.

“The KKK is still active in certain parts of the country and has public rallies. Hate should not be a way to bring communities together, nor should it be allowed or tolerated,” the petition’s description reads in part.

The other petition, “Change KKK status into Terrorist Organization,” asks the government to categorize the Klan in the same group as al Qaeda and the Islamic State. It has been signed more than 840,000 times within four days of being launched.

“We ask if ISIS or ISIL is labeled a terrorist group for their acts, then surely the KKK fit the clear description of a terrorist,” wrote that petition’s creator, Change.org user Jose Cardenas.

Both petitions were launched following the death of George Floyd, a black man whose racially charged killing in police custody last month sparked major unrest and calls for action.

Floyd, 46, died May 25 after being restrained by several members of the Minneapolis Police Department. Four officers have since been fired and face related charges.

Addressing riots that erupted in some cities amid the unrest that followed Floyd’s killing, President Trump blamed the violence on anti-fascist activists, or Antifa, and threatened to designate the political movement as a domestic terrorist group. He has failed so far to follow through, however, and the Department of Justice has yet to allege any ties between 51 accused rioters and antifa.

Harry Rogers, a Virginia man identified as the leader of the state’s KKK chapter, was arrested this week after allegedly driving his truck into a Black Lives Matter protest, meanwhile.

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