This week the Democratic Club has two speakers on one topic addressing local communities dealing with white nationalism. Our first speaker will be Kate Bitz with Western States Center. Kate Bitz, senior fellow at the Defending Democracy program at Western States Center, is researching and organizing against white nationalism and far-right ideologies. The program focuses on sharing cutting edge tools and case studies from our region for effective strategies to counter white nationalism and defend inclusive democracy , in addition to skill building racial equity and gender justice tracks.
As you know Laura Tenneson, our current program coordinator, is stepping down to work on a fellowship with Western States. Laura will then be introduced by Kate as our second speaker. Laura will be describing her own project as part of her Western States fellowship.
It may be hard to understand why these groups choose an area like Northern Idaho to hang out. After all we are about 94% white in this area. Regardless these groups previously located in our area are back again. Maybe they feel more secure here. Hopefully Laura’s project will let us all participate in reducing this form of hate and bringing more sanity to our region.
This will be a very important program for today and future days here in Kootenai County. Earlier we had people like Norm Gissel, Morris Dees of the Southern Poverty Law Center and others like the Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations, which continues today, using all their legal power to rid this area of the Aryan Nation and similar groups. We need to fight it again, this will be a good beginning for us all.
Come to the Iron Horse Restaurant, 8/25, noon 407 Sherman Avenue, CdA. Know your community, help to make our Kootenai County better. Bring a friend.