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High Court Hears KKK Highway Case

August 23, 2000

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) _ Missouri has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to allow the state to banish the Ku Klux Klan from a highway cleanup program.

The state is appealing a ruling by the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals which found that the state’s attempts to keep the Klan out of the Adopt-A-Highway program were unconstitutional.

``We are vehemently and adamantly opposed to the KKK’s participation in this program because the KKK is known to unlawfully discriminate and has a history of violent, criminal activity,″ state transportation director Henry Hungerbeeler said Tuesday.

Thomas Robb, the national director for the Ku Klux Klan, called the appeal filed Monday a waste of taxpayer money, saying the state was again attempting ``to silence our rights to freedom of speech.″

Organizations that ``adopt″ a stretch of road and pledge to keep it clean have their names posted on signs. The Klan adopted a one-mile stretch of Interstate 55 south of downtown St. Louis.

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