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Ku Klux Klan adopts a highway

MOON LAKE, Fla. -- The local den of the Ku Klux Klan has been allowed to 'adopt a road' as part of a highway cleanup plan, and other Pasco County residents say they don't like it.

The one-mile stretch of pavement and roadside will be cleaned by Klan members in the same way as other roads are cared for by groups such as the Boy Scouts and the League of Women Voters.

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Two signs reading, 'Adopt-A-Road, Pasco County: Knights of the Ku Klux Klan' will be displayed.

Such a sign near Jack Carpenter's house has him upset.

'Getting rid of all the blacks -- that's their definition of cleaning up the streets,' Carpenter said. 'That's their definition of cleaningup the country. I hope someone comes and rips it out of the ground.'

But KKK unit coordinator Johnnie Pipes explained: 'We didn't put these up to antagonize or intimidate anyone. We're just trying to put out a message that we're not part of a terrorist group. We want to help out our community.'

Pasco utility projects director Bob Sigmond said as long as the group picks up trash at least four times a year, they are entitled to participate. Pipes said Klan members will wear white shirts with the American flag on one shoulder and the Confederate flag on the other while they do the cleaning.

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County Commissioner Ed Collins will bring the issue up at Tuesday's meeting, but said the county is legally obliged to leave the signs up.

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