Lexington fighting racism after KKK propaganda found in neighborhood

By Rob Manch - Reporter

LEXINGTON (WSLS 10) - People in Lexington are working on new programs to battle racism after Ku Klux Klan propaganda was found littered around one of the city's neighborhoods.

Police still haven't identified who dropped those fliers around town, but pastor Lyndon Sayers says he isn't wasting any time in making sure the push back from the community sends a powerful message.

People living along Jackson Avenue in Lexington say it was frightening to discover dozens of KKK fliers in their neighborhood.

"The first thing that I did when I realized what I actually held in my hands was I went inside and locked the door," said Lesley Wheeler.

Mayor Mimi Elrod says she was shocked when she first heard the news.

"What in the world? Suddenly we're getting fliers from the KKK," said Elrod.

It was pastor Lyndon Sayers at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church who first took action.

"A friend came to me and said 'what are we going to do? There's KKK fliers out in the neighborhood, we can't just remain silent, we have to do something public," said Sayers.

His answer was an anti-racism rally on Hopkins Green downtown.

He took to Facebook to try and gather support.

By Monday, 300 people turned up, including Elrod.

"I think in a way this rally was, it was a wonderful thing to have happen, because I think it made people realize that we need to be inclusive," said Elrod.

Now, Sayers says he's forming a group he calls Community Anti Racism Education Initiative, or CARE.

"To move forward with the momentum that we had, with all those people gathered and we passed out our email address and we'll put together a website shortly and we'll put together some other events," said Sayers.

Events he hopes will change the image of a city rooted in Confederate history.

"Lexington has one historic identity that's rooted in the past, and they'd like to have an active, living history that's rooted in something hopeful and positive and inclusive," said Sayers.

Elrod says she is happy to see those positive aspects coming from this.

Wheeler, is a poetry professor at Washington and Lee, and says she has already had insightful discussions with her students on the topic.

Sayers says he is planning a poetry reading soon, and may try to organize another rally in the near future.

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