How Two Mask Wearing Protestors Have Given Idaho A Bad Name
Once again, Idaho is in the national headlines involving one isolated incident concerning race. According to multiple published reports, two people dressed up wearing masks holding up a sign saying 'white lives matter.' Local law enforcement is sending out a statement saying the group is recruiting Idahoans for their group.
The Southern Poverty Law Center and other groups are featured in the story. I know the Southern Poverty Law Center; I appeared on national television many years ago debating them on various issues. The group is entitled to their opinion, but I'd have to ask the folks headquartered in Montgomery, Alabama, if they've ever been to Idaho? If they've seen the number of folks, who move to Idaho every day from all parts of the world?
Idaho, like America, has had a challenging past. Today's Idaho is more diverse than the state has ever been. Boise has seen its share of racist graffiti in the last few months. The community has responded by denouncing these acts through community gatherings and press conferences. We should all be aware of the decisive nature of the inflammatory nature of such acts perpetrated throughout the central parts of the state.
However, Idahoans should also be very proud of the great state of tolerance, compassion, understanding, and racial harmony. Should it be against the law to display inflammatory messages? According to the United States Supreme Court, unless you're inciting a riot, you can say anything.
The lesson we must all learn is that you can't judge/condemn a state by the actions of two masked individuals.