Letter to the editor: Klan mask proves Summit needs to confront racism
A guy walked into the Dillon City Market wearing a Ku Klux Klan mask adorned with a peace sign and a swastika. Let’s get one thing straight: This is an outrage. It is not a provocative statement on the iconography of the swastika. It is not a joke about wearing masks. It is a man displaying his racist ideology and declaring the public space he occupies as forbidden to any nonwhite person under threat of violence. This is an unequivocal fact. There is no ambivalence to wearing a Klan mask in public, and such a statement must be addressed for what it is: a display of white supremacism bordering on terrorism in Dillon.
This episode proves Summit County desperately needs to confront issues related to and stemming from endemic racism. Look at the demographics of Breckenridge, Frisco and Dillon. They are all at least 95% white. This is exceptional compared with nearly every other municipality in the United States aside from other resort and mountain towns. How can this be a coincidence? It’s time mountain communities such as ours start looking at the structural factors that have maintained these unnatural demographics. A man wearing a Klan mask walking into a grocery store midday cannot and should not be written off as a singular, isolated incident. It is the tip of an iceberg; we must all take a deep dive to understand the racial issues beneath the surface.
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