A three-day Whites-only religious conference was held last week in Lamar County, Alabama, where a cross was burned and the whispers of racism were high.
Fliers were posted announcing that all White Christians were invited to the fourth annual pastors conference which was held July 4-6, according to MSNBC.
“It was put up throughout the town in the middle of the night, when everyone was asleep without the permission of the business owner,” said Norris Music Manager Tyler Cantrell.
Local residents and county officials were concerned about the racial overtone of the conference, which resulted in Winfield Mayor Wayne Silas allegedly ordering the fliers to be taken down.
Christian Identity Ministries founder Mel Lewis accused the mayor of violating his freedom of speech. “We are not breaking any laws. We’re not violating any ordinances," he said. "We’re bringing the Word of God to people who want it, obviously, or they wouldn’t be here.”
The rural area in which the conference was held was decorated with White supremacy slogans and Ku Klux Klan flags, and was to be concluded with a cross-burning that the flier called a “sacred Christian cross lighting.”
Hezekiah Jackson, president of the Birmingham Metro Chapter of the NAACP said that the cross-burning was “especially troubling.”
“The only context that I’m familiar with is one that is not very positive. And one that really symbolizes an era that many of us have hoped to put behind us, and that is this whole era of Jim Crow, this whole era of White supremacy, this whole era of discrimination and racial hatred,” said Hezekiah.
Event organizer Rev. William C. Collier said that his church is not a hate group, but he does believe the "White race is God’s chosen people.”
Watch the report below for more on the story.
What do you think? Was this an act of pure racism? Leave your comments below.