Fairview Township's acting police chief suspects he knows why the Ku Klux Klan targeted his otherwise peaceful and tolerant community with fliers earlier this month.
"Basically, I think the KKK is trying to get their name out there," said Lt. Jason Loper, adding that media coverage of the fliers is helping their cause.
He's likely right as far as the why.
The white supremacist organization probably is just trying to stir the pot – perhaps, as Keli Goff of the Root suggested in an opinion piece here Monday, because there's just not enough hate for this hate group's taste.
Residents in a township neighborhood along Ridge Road were disturbed April 18 when they found literature on their driveways and porches depicting a hooded figure.
The message: "Are there troubles in your neighborhood? You can sleep tonight knowing the Klan is awake!"
According to Loper, there is no trouble in that neighborhood – very little crime and no reports of racial discord.
However, to suggest the media overreacted is to suggest residents who reported the fliers to police overreacted.
Perhaps the first reaction is to throw them in the trash -- where garbage distributed by anonymous cowards who hide behind hoods belongs – and forget it.
But the Ku Klux Klan's move did deserve the acknowledgement and response it received: A simple, forceful condemnation.
To ignore it would be to ignore the fact some people hold such views. Doing nothing might suggest to the small-minded among us that their hate will be tolerated.
If you do nothing about a weed in your lawn, you're just inviting it to spread. And one of the best ways to deal with weeds is to cultivate a healthy turf that will crowd out the pest plant and eventually kill it.
In that sense, Fairview Township took the fliers as an opportunity to tend to its lawn.
Loper and township administrators issued a statement reaffirming their commitment to equality and pledged to protect the rights of anyone who might be victimized because of their race, religion, sexual orientation or other factors.
Other groups, from the York County chapter of the NAACP and other social justice organizations to area churches, condemned the KKK's action and echoed the township's call for unity.
We invite others to add their voices.
Let the Klan know we won't allow its hate to take root here.