Easter eggs were delivered early for a number of Oakdale residents, but instead of candy, the recipients found white supremacy propaganda.
The eggs were found Friday on doorsteps, in planters and tucked in bushes in newer neighborhoods on Oakdale’s west side. Printed in all capital letters on strips of paper were passages like “Diversity is a code word for white genocide” and “Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.”
Charlene Barnett said her husband found the egg first but left it for her to open, thinking it was from a church or neighbor, given that it was Good Friday.
“I’m leaving the house in the morning at 8:30 and I go, oh someone left a nice little gift for me on the porch,” Barnett said. But after opening it, “I dropped it and went, ‘Oh, God.’ Something so pretty – a wish for hope and a renewal in spring – and it’s something nasty on the inside.”
The message in her egg was not only racist but a bit perplexing: “Asia for Asians, Africa for Africans and white countries for everybody!!!”
“The only reason our color is different is because of migration and habitat,” said resident Cheryl Wolford. “These people are not only hateful, they are also stupid, they don’t know their history. ... They are just ignoramuses.”
Wolford, who referred to the eggs as “hate bombs,” surveyed her neighborhood in The Vineyards subdivision and found at least 15 more eggs after discovering hers on her welcome mat.
Along with the passages, the eggs contained a Web address for the people apparently responsible, organizers of the White Man March.
The first of these marches took place March 15. Only small groups participated in Cincinnati and Birmingham, Ala., no more than 100 people in all, according to the online news and gossip blog Gawker.
That and future marches, the next scheduled for today, coincide with holidays.
The organizer, Kyle Hunt of Massachusetts, on his website encourages people to disseminate the eggs to increase membership.
He points out that the march scheduled for today is just a day before April 20, which is not only a “marijuana holiday and Hitler’s birthday, but it is also Easter this year.”
Reese VanderVeen, pastor of Oakdale’s Community Christian Reformed Church, learned about the eggs while preparing for Good Friday services. “These insidious materials are being distributed by a few troubled individuals who have allowed their minds and actions to be driven by hatred and fear,” he said in an email. “Unfortunately, they often find others on whom to prey by manipulating and inciting the related emotions of anger and discouragement. Such propaganda has no place in our community and offers nothing but darkness and despair.”
Oakdale police Sgt. Ben Savage said he received several complaints about the eggs, and it isn’t the first time members of the white supremacy group have advertised in Oakdale. About a dozen fliers publicizing the racist rallies were posted last Saturday along the route for the Oakdale Rodeo parade. Savage said they were removed before the parade began.
The Police Department can’t impede free speech, but Savage said there’s an ordinance against posting fliers without the city’s permission. He also suggested to complaining residents that if they witness a person leaving the propaganda, a report can be filed against that person for littering on private property.
Both the fliers and the eggs were posted and dropped off early in the morning, at least before 7 a.m., by one neighbor’s estimate.