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Politics

Anonymous Says US Senators Were 'Incorrectly Outed' As KKK Members 262

Dave Knott writes: Nine names, 23 email addresses and 57 unlabelled phone numbers were published by hackers last weekend as part of an Anonymous-organized effort to "unhood" members of the Ku Klux Klan. There are doubts, however, about the Operation KKK data dump's veracity — and about one file, in particular, that alleges four U.S. senators and five mayors have hate group associations. The questionable data was released on PasteBin by an individual called Amped Attacks, who has now distanced himself from Anonymous, stating "i am not apart of anonymous nor have i ever claimed to be. i am my own man that acts on my own accord. i do however respect #OpKKK." To clarify the situation, Anonymous took to Twitter on Tuesday evening to state that "the twitter account that released the pastebin with the government officials that are clearly not KKK". Meanwhile, the Anonymous members behind Operation KKK say that "the actual release for Operation KKK will be 5 Nov." This is of course a date that has no small significance for Anonymous.
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Anonymous Says US Senators Were 'Incorrectly Outed' As KKK Members

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  • Gay Kay Kay? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Shoten ( 260439 ) on Tuesday November 03, 2015 @12:10PM (#50856031)

    I noticed that something seemed off about this...since they said the mayor of Lexington, KY (Jim Gray) was a member of the KKK. Jim Gray is gay, and came out long ago; I would believe that you'd lose your membership in the KKK once you announce in a very public manner that you're gay.

    On the other hand, it definitely gives a new aspect to the notion of being "outed".

    • Re:Gay Kay Kay? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 03, 2015 @12:41PM (#50856349)

      I live in Lexington, KY, and was saddened to see Mayor Jim Gray name on the list. The Mayor was forced to release a public statement denying the allegations. I may be stretching into hyperbole a bit here, but this is one of the result of McCarthyism: by merely being accused of association, the court of public opinion will judge that person guilty quickly-- even if investigation reveals no ties to said association. People's professional and personal lives are ruined by stuff like this if it gets too much momentum and oxygen.

      Anyone with common sense would realize that Mayor Gray sexual orientation conflicts with that preferred by the KKK, which would preclude him from ever gaining membership in a group like them. Which makes it even more ridiculous that Mayor Gray had to release a public statement-- it's a shame it is even necessary.

      The KKK has a hateful, narrow world view that is incompatible with who our mayor is. The KKK is anti-anything-not-WASSP (White Anglo Saxon Straight Protestant), and explicitly so. Mayor Gray is gay and out, and for those who know him personally or his public record, he hasn't an ounce of the racism that beats in the dark, angry hearts of KKK members. Gray doesn't sound like someone the KKK is looking to have among its ranks.

      My goal isn't to sound like a staffer or loyal ally defending the mayor (despite the fact that I voted him.) The point is that there are a lot of idiots out there who believe these click-baitey releases and will swallow it whole without thinking. This is real; I heard small talk in line at the store this morning regarding it. There is enough general ignorance out there to make this a problem, and again: think McCarthyism. While this isn't the same as a powerful institution or individual from the establishment perpetuating it, the modern era of the internet can make us similar all victims.

      • My public statement on the matter would read:

        Members of the press, general public and constituents, journalists, friends, and Anonymous:

        A list has been released that names me as a member of a well-known racist organization. Some of you may be likely to believe this because the news media reported on this story.

        Fucking prove it.

        This is the end of my statement. Questions may be directed to my inbox at: Nofuckyou (all one word) @ thisisbullshit.com

        • You have my vote!
          • They had me at terrorist.
          • by KGIII ( 973947 )

            And my ax!

        • by KGIII ( 973947 )

          I'm running for office in Maine in 2016. I was kind of hoping I'd see my name on this list. It'd get me some free publicity! It would most amusing, as well, because I'm partially black (as mentioned in the other thread about this subject). I do not see my name on the list.

          As an aside, what's amusing is your method of campaigning actually closely mirrors my own though I'm still having the documentation worked on. (Again, drawing on memory of the last thread on this subject.)

          Anyhow, can't stop now! I'm late f

        • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

          Well of course those who form temporary associations within the shadowy smoke screen of 'Anonymous' do often follow up with proof, after allowing sufficient rope for the shame less denials. It is really much more fun that way, just when the denials and main stream media PR efforts are about to succeed, the hammer drops shattering the PR fabricated illusion. In fact the initial announcement often trigger insider accusation and exposure, people often get sick of carrying the water for other people's lies and

      • by cdrudge ( 68377 )

        I may be stretching into hyperbole a bit here, but this is one of the result of McCarthyism: by merely being accused of association, the court of public opinion will judge that person guilty quickly-- even if investigation reveals no ties to said association.

        Pretty much every reasonable news site/blog/facebook wall/etc that I've seen has done pretty much the opposite with the list. They've pointed out the several names that are almost definitely not KKK members and questioning the legitimacy of the entire

  • by ArmoredDragon ( 3450605 ) on Tuesday November 03, 2015 @12:11PM (#50856045)

    A fundamental problem I have with this, especially hacktivism in general, is that these people are doing things that they themselves wouldn't like the police to be doing. If you wouldn't support the police hacking into the systems of people saying things that are unpopular, then why would you support anonymous doing it? Likewise, DDoSing websites is censorship by every definition of the word, I don't care what purpose the website serves (be it commercial or not.)

    Maybe in some situations, censorship is acceptable in Europe, but not here, not with the first amendment.

    • What makes you think censorship is acceptable in Europe?
      • by ArmoredDragon ( 3450605 ) on Tuesday November 03, 2015 @12:23PM (#50856179)

        There are a lot of examples, such as it being illegal to bear a swaztika in Germany.

        • And Britain's broad anti-slander/anti-libel laws.

          • What people don't get sued for slander/libel in America? What's the most litigious country in the world coming to?
        • by T.E.D. ( 34228 )
          I think we can safely count Germany an exception. Yes, not every western democracy outlaws free association and free speech in this manner, but not every western democracy happens to be the country that started the two bloodiest wars in human history less than a century ago either. Sometimes, if you make it targeted enough, an exception or two might be understandable.
          • No, you can't. For example, France is demanding that Twitter turn over information about people who tweeted "hate speech" so that it could prosecute them:

            http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07... [nytimes.com]

            A tweet is nothing more than speech, and the "speech crimes" that France is pursuing were:

            - Anti-semitic comments
            - Holocaust denial (this is actually illegal throughout Europe, not just Germany)
            - Denigrating muslims

            Even if you call this one an exception, I can find countless others, and for practically every country in Euro

    • by shaitand ( 626655 ) on Tuesday November 03, 2015 @12:31PM (#50856235) Journal
      The police have legal immunity for their crimes while being granted special powers to enable them to commit them and the first amendment only applies to government. Private citizens are granted protections in the Constitution not restrictions while the reverse is true of government. Officials acting in their public capacity do not have protections from the bill of rights as evidenced by the separation of church and state. It is illegal for a government official to bring their religion to their public office/function.

      A private citizen not only is granted no protections but must commit civil disobedience at great personal risk to protest for major changes and fight the protected and entrenched powers.

      There is no end to the list of things I'm perfectly okay with a private citizen doing while completely opposed to police/military/government doing.
      • In other words, if you say something that somebody doesn't like, it's acceptable for them to rummage through your computer and your house and air your dirty laundry to the public, just because they aren't the government? Because this is what you're advocating against the KKK. Sure, your unpopular opinion might be different, but other than that the circumstances are identical.

        Not only that, but the 4th amendment doesn't specify that the government isn't allowed to do it, that's only the first amendment.

        • I didn't say anything about Anonymous or the KKK. I was speaking to the logical basis of the GP's argument that if you aren't okay with the police doing something you shouldn't be okay with a private citizen doing it.

          Laws are black and white, the real world is very very grey. If it weren't we wouldn't need courts and the constitution wouldn't guarantee the people the ultimate right to block injustice from all branches via the right to jury trial and their power to nullify the law if they feel it is the just
  • And anyone can claim to be anonymous?

    Well, I say we need to throw everyone in jail, on suspicion of this cowardly info-terrorist activity.

  • Who do you believe? A mysterious organization that uses nefarious and questionable means to gather their information? Or, do you believe what comes out of the mouth of a politician?

    • by tnk1 ( 899206 )

      If the information released under the name of Anonymous is backed with verifiable facts, then we won't need to believe them, we'll be able to fact check it ourselves. And the most effective "operations" are ones where the information is found is released so that it can be checked.

      However, it is true that what "Anonymous" says about someone is meaningless without proof being provided to back it up. The very attribution of this to Anonymous literally means that anyone could be releasing it for any reason.

  • So this release was a fake, and the true release will not have any mistakes? How did they verify?
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Rob Riggs ( 6418 )
      No. This is a false flag operation to get the public to doubt the real information when it is released. Thanks for playing.
    • by tnk1 ( 899206 )

      Presumably, they will provide proof that can be fact checked independently.

      If they don't provide that, then there is no point in accepting any suggesting that they have "verification". "Anonymous" has no reputation to stake on this, so there is no reason to trust their word.

      And really, the point of Anonymous doing these things is to release information for review. They may say it is a list of KKK members, but anyone who understands how Anonymous works understands that they are there to simply release thin

  • Day before release: "Oh I wonder what famous, powerful and influential people will be outed?!?"

    Day of release: ".....Wait, this list just looks like a bunch of poor redneck nobodies."

    • by smartr ( 1035324 )

      It's almost like the schmucks who are on the the list probably don't give a damn, except the ones who don't belong on the list or who are misidentified as being the ones on the list. Behold, KKK members David Duke and James Smith. Sure, James Smith might be the most common name in the USA, but herp derp KKK herp herp USA USA USA USA.

  • by dmomo ( 256005 ) on Tuesday November 03, 2015 @12:32PM (#50856247)

    I wonder if that dump was meant as a distraction in an attempt to pre-emptively discredit the real data when it actually does land.

  • Amped Attacks, who has now distanced himself from Anonymous, stating "i am not apart I'm assuming that he is claiming to not be a member of anonymous, but a missing space sure makes a difference in that statement.

  • ...when the watchers hide behind masks? Anyone taking this whole thing seriously is fooling themselves. (Hint: The 24 hour news cycle)
  • by MikeRT ( 947531 ) on Tuesday November 03, 2015 @12:36PM (#50856287)

    Makes me sympathetic to the British standard of defamation. The law ought to provide these people with absolutely no legal defense in the face of a lawsuit or prosecution for defamation.

    • If you say "John Smith is a member of the KKK" and you actually have no reason to believe that John Smith is a member, you can be charged with defamation in the US. Now, if John Smith actually was a member of the KKK and you had proof, you couldn't be sued for defamation in the US (well, you could but it'd be tossed out quickly) but in the British courts truth isn't a defense against defamation.

      • in the British courts truth isn't a defense against defamation

        Peopole on the internet always say this, but it is simply not true. Truth is always a defence. The problem is that if you are sued for slander/libel, it is up to you to prove that it is true as your defence.

        If I say "Politician/famous person X is a child rapist, murderer and Chelsea fan" I had better have very strong evidence to back up my claim.

    • by khallow ( 566160 )
      Why? It's clearly defamation by the US standard.
  • To clarify the situation, Anonymous took to Twitter on Tuesday evening to state that "the twitter account that released the pastebin with the government officials that are clearly not KKK"

    ...that "the twitter account that released the pastebin with the government officials that are clearly not KKK" what?

  • yep. nothing to see here.

  • Not verified, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's bogus.

    All I see are claims that it was not sponsored or verified by those spearheading OPKKK. Doubts about the data's veracity are mentioned but not supported.
    All we know is 1) this was not likely associated w/ the release coming on 11/5. 2) Nobody has verified or disproven the names on this list.

    • by Nidi62 ( 1525137 )

      Not verified, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's bogus.

      All I see are claims that it was not sponsored or verified by those spearheading OPKKK. Doubts about the data's veracity are mentioned but not supported. All we know is 1) this was not likely associated w/ the release coming on 11/5. 2) Nobody has verified or disproven the names on this list.

      Well, the fact that one of the few names actually given is of a person who has essentially no chance of desiring membership in the KKK and even less likely to be accepted into the KKK (they don't take too kindly to people that are openly gay) calls the rest of the information into question.

    • by sumdumass ( 711423 ) on Tuesday November 03, 2015 @01:38PM (#50856905) Journal

      Back in the mid 90s, i joined the KKK for the express purpose of informing some black activists friends of their activities. I actually joined another group like this for the same purpose. I know of others who did the same. You could get in their list server and chat groups which were generally invite only.

      I stopped when it was obvious that they knew what i was doing. They used the clashes that came from it for publicity. 20 hate mongers preaching hate doesn't get as much news coverage as the same being protested by hundreds of others or the rare occasions when violence would break out.

      I used a fake name but an email address i still use today. Not sure if it will be included in the dump but if it is, it will be fun to see what idiots on parade do with it. Most of the people who would know the address were in on it to.

    • by jcr ( 53032 )

      Not verified, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's bogus.

      Do the words "burden of proof" ring any bells with you?

      -jcr

  • They were slandered, not "outed."

    -jcr

  • What better way would the klukkers have to discredit the outing of their members, than first posting a list with a bunch of innocent non-klukker names on it?

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