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KKK infiltrator will speak on ‘Klan-Destine Relationships’

2/13/2012 —

African American author and speaker Daryl Davis will present ‘Klan-Destine Relationships,’ 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 28 in the Student Union Building auditorium at Penn State Beaver. His presentation is free and open to the public and provides an overview of his book by the same name. Davis charts his experiences in infiltrating the Ku Klux Klan and offers a personal, real-life look at racism in the United Sates.

For more than a decade, Davis has had closer contact with members of the KKK than most white non-members and certainly most African Americans. His presentation includes stories of setting up surprise meetings with KKK leaders who were unaware of his race and attending Klan rallies.

On his journey to explore racism and gather information for his book, Davis eventually became the recipient of robes and hoods from Klan members who came to him to rescind their beliefs. Through his relationships, Davis believes he has come upon a successful method of forming friendships between sworn enemies.

His methods are controversial. Among some whites he has been deemed ‘politically incorrect’ and called an ‘Uncle Tom’ by some African Americans.

But Davis offers this challenge to his detractors: ‘I have Klan robes and hoods hanging in my closet, given to me voluntarily by members who have quit the Klan since coming to know me. That's what I've done to improve race relations. How many robes and hoods have you received as a result of your methods?’

For information about the program, contact Robin Schreck, coordinator of student activities and residence life, at ras62@psu.edu or 724-773-3947.

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