The Ku Klux Klan Defends its Rights 1921

The second wave of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) began during World War I and flourished in the early to mid-1920s. Feeding on the antiforeigner and nationalist sentiment of the war years, the KKK promoted itself as a “100% American” organization.” It spread its membership and white-supremacist views across the country. The Ku Klux Klan petitioned the Government for protection of their First Amendment rights and exercised them through publications and parades. The KKK has inspired debates about the limits of the First Amendment that continue to this day. Is our right to free speech absolute, or are the consequences of some forms of speech so disruptive that they should not be tolerated?