What Is The Ku Klux Klan?

Satisfactory Essays
Kaitlin Hock
Pre-AP, Period 6
23 April 2014
The KKK began in Pulaski, Tennessee at a local law office after the civil war. The group was started by a group of six confederate veterans. The origins of the Klan had little to do with the out of control behavior for which it would become known. It quickly grew into something much larger: America’s first terrorist organization. The KKK was known for performing many raids on African-Americans, Jews, Catholics, immigrants, and white republicans, throughout the time in which they were in action.
The name “Ku Klux Klan” derived from the Greek word circle, or “κύκλος.” It was first founded only to be a fraternity social group, purely for amusement. At the beginning, the Klan’s night outings consisted of only wearing their costumes to frighten newly released slaves, nothing more. The mysterious costumes and horses at night attracted more men to join this Klan. Soon, things spiraled out of control. The true KKK was born on a June night in 1866. A large riot broke out between black ex-soldiers and whites in Memphis, Tennessee. White policemen helped the whites in defeating the black ex-soldiers, and by the time the fight was over, there were 46 people dead, along with 70 more injured, and many schools and churches burned to the ground.
Southern state legislatures soon passed laws designed to maintain black superiority. These laws were known as “black codes,” which limited the newly freed slaves, making them second-class citizens. Angry congressional republicans passed the Reconstruction Act of 1867, defeating these “black codes,” and giving blacks the right to vote. With this jeopardizing whites’ superiority, Klan leaders held a secret meeting in Nashville, Tennessee. At this ti...

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...a, the Klan attracts attention by teaching white supremacy and superiority. Not only this, but they still use cruel words in stating that they are against Jews, homosexuals, Catholics, immigrants, and African-Americans. The KKK still wears the costume, and practices traditional ceremonies such as burning the cross, a sacred Klan ritual since 1915.
Men and women join the Klan today, not just for racism, but because it makes them feel as though they belong, and a sense of ritual and kinship. The Klan claims to be a “defender of virtue and a champion of Christian morals.” But for the most part, Neo-Nazi groups overshadowed the KKK in the 2000s.
In conclusion, just between 1889 and 1918, mobs of the KKK lynched 129 Midwestern people, 9 from New England, and 2,915. Keep in mind that this is not including the years that the KKK was active after 1918, and before 1889.
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