KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Knoxville’s mayor is finding herself in the position of having to deny being a member of the Ku Klux Klan.
Monday, a list of purported KKK members began circulating online.
The list appeared after anonymous hacktivists threatened to reveal the names of 1,000 Ku Klux Klan members this month to coincide with the one-year anniversary of “Operation KKK,” an Anonymous-led effort to shut down the group.
Mayor Madeline Rogero released a statement via Facebook saying in part, “I’m not even sure this is worth responding to, but for the record: There is a list circulating online purporting to “out” elected officials as members of the KKK. For reasons unfathomable to me or anyone who knows me, my name is on the list. Given my background, my interracial family, my public record and my personal beliefs, this would be hilarious except that it is probably being seen by a lot of people who have no idea who I am.”
Rogero goes on to list a number of programs she has overseen aimed at the black community.
She concludes by saying, “I strongly request that anyone associated with the creation and dissemination of this false and defamatory accusation retract it immediately. It is irresponsible and slanderous. (Although, on a positive note, I do appreciate that they are using a picture of me from 12 years ago. Very flattering!)”