GLOVERSVILLE, N.Y. (NEWS10) – An article in a local newspaper has garnered quite a bit of negative attention for publishing a piece on an apparent local presence of the Ku Klux Klan.
The front page of Sunday’s Leader Herald showed four masked people who claim the KKK thrives.
The reporter interviewed them in a secluded part of the woods and many people are now questioning the paper’s credibility.
“Many are wondering do I have to be worried about this? Is the KKK in Gloversville?” Mayor Dayton King said.
The article was the first in a three-part series on an alleged local presence of the Ku Klux Klan.
Mayor King calls the article irresponsible and hypocritical.
“If you want to write a letter to the editor, you need to sign your name, you need to have an address, and have a phone number. They’ve given a platform to four people that go by fake names. They don’t really know who they are and they are just saying anything and they printed it.”
According to the paper, the KKK is thriving in Fulton County but city leaders say that information isn’t verified by the paper and only incites fear.
“Our minorities become a little more fearful, a little more on the lookout, and the people who are bigots become more empowered,” Vincent DeSantis, Common Council Member said.
One local mother, who didn’t want to show her face on camera because she’s worried for her young daughter at school, says KKK fliers with racist messages have popped up all over the city.
“My little girl is black and she goes to school. She’s 11 years old and to even fear to take her out of our home because these people are spewing that they are here and that they are thriving. Who are you? They don’t want to even say who they are.”
Mayor King says he’s planning to meet with the paper’s publisher and will soon hold a race-relations forum.
For now, he has one message for those involved.
“This will not be tolerated here in Gloversville or Fulton County.”
The paper stands by the piece. The publisher denied NEWS10 ABC’s interview requests and hopes people will reserve judgment until part three.
Many say they are canceling their subscriptions.