APut 07/13 1854 Aryan Nations HAYDEN LAKE, Idaho (AP) -- White supremacists staged a cross
APut 07/13 1854 Aryan Nations
HAYDEN LAKE, Idaho (AP) -- White supremacists staged a
cross-burning, but used electric lights instead of
gasoline-fueled fire, a participant at the weekend Aryan World
Congress was quoted as saying.
No guns were visible, and those attending the gathering at the
Church of Jesus Christ Christin (Aryan Nations) showed less
conviction than in the past, said the unnamed participant quoted
by the Spokesman-Review in Spokane.
"Compared to last year, it was like going from a forest fire
to a barbeque," the participant said.
At the windup of the gathering Sunday, a hat was passed to
raise money for legal fees for Aryan Nations leader Richard
Butler and Robert Miles of The Mountain Church in Cohoctah,
Mich., the participant said.
Both face federal charges in Arkansas of plotting at the 1983
World Aryan Congress to overthrow the government.
News reporters and photographers were barred from the two-day
gathering. A news conference was scheduled Monday morning, but a
$50 entrance fee was required.
"At this point, to my knowledge, no one is willing to pay the
50 bucks, and so consequently we're not going to have a press
conference," Aryan Nations spokesman Richard Masker said Sunday.
Everett Hofmeister, a lawyer for Butler, said he might file a
lawsuit against Kootenai County sheriff's deputies who
photographed everyone entering the Aryan gathering.
Hofmeister branded the action an infringement on the
constitutional right of freedom of assembly of those attending
"We felt that this was an outstanding congress," Masker said
at the conclusion of the event. "Everyone who attended was very
pleased with it."
The unnamed participant disagreed.
"There was nothing profound this year," the participant said.
"I saw people looking for somebody to follow, and there was
"This sedition charge stuff is splitting the movement," the
At past Aryan gatherings, security guards and participants
have displayed semiautomatic rifles, shotguns, carbines, handguns
Guards this year carried large wooden shields, painted with
emblems of the Ku Klux Klan and Aryan Nations, and some carried
The Aryans also couldn't get a county fire permit for the
cross burning, so they erected a cross wrapped with electric
light bulbs on a catwalk on the compound's guard tower.
The participant said about 175 people attended the Saturday
evening "cross lighting," conducted by Miles with about two dozen
people in Klan uniforms.
Members of one political faction appear content to "talk among
themselves," he said. "Another faction wants to go out into the
community" with its message denouncing Jews, blacks, the news
media and the federal government.
"At no time did I hear them mention the need for a white
homeland," the participant said.
That was a focus of Miles' 1986 address.
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