Press Conference Address from Tony Stewart, Kootenai County Task Force…
Editor’s Note: Several weeks ago, Aryan Nations members left recruitment materials and racist pamphlets in neighborhoods in the Inland Northwest area of Washington and Idaho. In response, law enforcement, civic and community leaders from throughout the region held a press conference to speak out against racism and stand together against intolerance.
Press Conference Address from Tony Stewart, Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations
“As we meet here today, our Inland Northwest communities are once again experiencing the distribution of unwanted, vile hate materials. In recent weeks, there have also been incidents of harassment and violence directed at citizens in both Spokane and Coeur d’Alene.
Today’s gathering of the Inland Northwest city mayors and law enforcement officials sends a powerful united voice that we reject the hate and will aggressively prosecute hate crimes.
A neo-Nazi, who recently relocated to the Inland Northwest, stated he would re-establish the Aryan Nations in the only part of the United States that would welcome and support the movement.
Our message to him is: You will fail in the same way that Richard Butler failed in recruiting the citizens of the Inland Northwest to his movement. We are a people who welcome and celebrate our cultural and racial diversity. We live by the creed proclaimed by the late Father Bill Wassmuth, a Catholic priest, who said, ‘Saying yes to human rights is the best way to say no to prejudice.’”