Anonymous Accusations and Tactics

The hacker group “Anonymous” is releasing named of people they claim are in the Ku Klux Klan. There is a list circulating around that purports to be a partial excerpt from the larger group of names. Included in this list are names, addresses, phone numbers, and other personal information of some members of the Virginia Flaggers along with similar information for the West Florida Flagger.

If studying history has taught me one thing, it’s taught me not to accept a claim without evidence. Just because an anonymous list on the internet has these names on it doesn’t mean these people are members of the KKK. Additionally, I think it’s just wrong to put personal information about people on the internet. That’s why I’m not going to provide a link to the list.

While I applaud the goal of depriving actual members of the KKK of their anonymity, it seems to me the best course of action would be to provide name, city, and state along with the primary source evidence that shows the KKK connection. I think whoever put this list up has not helped matters any. Putting personal information on people out there is especially a foul.

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7 comments

  1. I think this list is bogus. There are too many easy and (for lack of a better term) obvious targets on this list, and Anonymous has indicated they haven’t actually released anything yet. Do I believe there are Klan members and non-member sympathizers among the heritage movement? Absolutely, but this list is just made-up trash, stirring the pot.

    There’s one URL in that list to a post I did about Matt Heimbach two years ago. I stand by what I wrote there, but have killed that link and reposted it at another URL, as I’d prefer not to be part of this particular data dump.

    1. Good move, Andy. With the group name “Anonymous,” just calling this an anonymous list because the poster is unidentified can lead to confusion. It purports to be a partial list of KKK members, but like you said, the group claims they haven’t released anything yet. Either way, it’s ugly to put people’s addresses, phone numbers, and relatives on the internet.

      1. Pat Young · · Reply

        The posts so far don’t contain evidence. The source is suspect. I will be looking at what is posted Thursday.

        1. Yes, but I hope the posts on Thursday don’t contain the detailed personal information.

      2. Yes, publishing personal information about people as an act of intimidation, or to make trouble for them, is fundamentally wrong.

        But it needs also to be stated plainly that several of the people on that list have engaged in exactly the same sort of invasion of privacy tactics themselves, in the name of “defending” Confederate heritage. They’ve flagged people at their private residences, published home telephone addresses and telephone numbers, and tried to make trouble for people at their jobs, simply because they wanted to strike back at them. Others on the list have stood by while others engaged in these tactics, and said nothing. In those cases, my sense of sympathy and moral outrage on their behalf is a bit limited.

        1. It’s one of the things that makes them odious. That they use odious tactics doesn’t give others the justification to become odious themselves, though. I think we can be condemnatory of the tactics and not worry about anything on the behalf of the confederate heritage people.

        2. “They’ve flagged people at their private residences…” I only ones I know of being flagged at their residences were public officials.

          “…published home telephone addresses and telephone numbers…” Again, of public officials. And unless they were publishing unlisted numbers, it was already published information.

          …and tried to make trouble for people at their jobs…” Actually, that has happened to numerous heritage folks, some of whom lost their jobs because of it. Susan Hathaway has been especially targeted in this manner.

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