Klan rears hood in Midland, MI
Klan rears hood in Midland
By Angela E. Lackey
of the Daily News
Daily News/RYAN WOOD While some motorists yelled profanities and others just looked on, Randy Gray, 30, of Midland, stood on the sidewalk along Eastman Avenue near Saginaw Road Wednesday afternoon with an American flag and wearing his Ku Klux Klan uniform. “We have a constitutional right to walk on a public sidewalk dressed anyway we want,” Gray said of why he was out walking Wednesday. He added, “I can’t allow my country to be ruined, it is not just about Barack Obama, it goes deeper than that. If I have to be the last man standing, why not?” Police said that Gray was exercising his First Amendment right and was not breaking the law.
Randy Gray, 30, of Midland, marched up and down the sidewalk in front of Garber Chevrolet. Garber employees, speaking anonymously, said they saw him walking up and down the sidewalk “peacefully.”
“He wasn’t raising a ruckus,” one man said.
Midland Police and the Michigan State Police responded to the corner just after noon. He was seen with what appeared to be a handgun. Police briefly questioned Gray and inspected it, then left after saying he had not broken any laws.
Gray said he had been asked to leave by a Garber employee, but refused.
“We have a constitutional right to walk on a public sidewalk dressed any way we want,” he said.
“I was just walking on the sidewalk,” he said. “I was just minding my own business.”
As he talked, one woman in a moving car rolled down her window and yelled, “You’re living in a world that doesn’t exist any more.”
Daily News/ BRIANA SCROGGINS A Michigan State Police trooper inspects what appears to be a handgun that, Randy Gray, 30, of Midland, was carrying while walking the sidewalk at the corner of Eastman Avenue and Saginaw Road on Wednesday afternoon. Gray was dressed in Ku Klux Klan garb and waving to cars as they passed by.
Gray was yelled at by several passing motorists, including one woman who screamed a profanity.
Gray said he is a member of the KKK, but would give no further information about the organization or number of members in Midland County. He said he wasn’t out just because Barack Obama won yesterday’s presidential election.
“I feel white people feel more oppressed,” he said. “We’re basically told as white people we can’t have any organizations. We’re ruled by communists.
“It’s not just about Barack Obama. It goes deeper than that.”
Gray then admitted he did pick today — the day after the first African-American was elected president — to go on his walk.
Reporter Angela E. Lackey can be reached at email@example.com or (989) 839-4246.