- KATU got video of tricksy boneheads.
Tony Baker, one of the key members (‘Exalted Ruler’) of the Sherwood Elks Lodge, apparently posted the following message on Portland IndyMedia, explaining the circumstances surrounding the neo-Nazi booking by the Hammerskins, and, upon the Elks’ discovery of the Hammerskins political status, its eventual cancellation:
The event was shut down
October 7, 2007
As one of the leaders … of the Sherwood Elks Lodge, I wanted to let everyone know that we were duped.
This group identified themselves as a “rock group reunion of friends” when arranging to use our facility. I can assure everyone that when they arrived, there was no indication who they were… no banners, no literature, no slogans, no out of order clothing, no racist conversations, only music and a gathering… nothing to indicate that this gathering was anything more than a reunion of a rock group. I know it’s hard to believe, but to any of the several dozen members of our organization who were in attendance last night, the gathering looked exactly as stated, a rock group reunion.
Once we received … indication that the Hammerskin Nation was using our facility, we worked to confirm [this] as quickly as possible (this was a bit difficult for us because again, there was no outward sign in this gathering that these people were a racist group, so we couldn’t initially [determine] whether the group was racist or whether the folks calling to complain were prank callers. After all, what’s the odds of a racist organization holding a meeting right under your nose without any indication of who they are?). We talked directly to the organizers, who denied involvement in the racist group and reiterated their story that they were a rock group reunion.
In spite of outward appearances, the evidence soon indicated that we had been very badly misled, and the guests in our facility were indeed an organization whose beliefs we can neither condone or support. They had also [misrepresented] themselves in renting the facility, and continued to misrepresent themselves in the evening. We shut down the event as quickly and as safely as possible after that and the group left before 8:00. None of the guests ever did admit who they were and their organizational affiliation.
The members of our organization are both shocked and embarrassed by this event, and thank everyone for quickly bringing the true identity of these folks to our attention.
So there you have it… “Portland, Oregon, the heart of Bob Mathews‘ [1953–1984] White Homeland, is [no longer] the location of this once in a lifetime event. No detail or expense have [sic] been spared to make this a must-attend event and [to] honor our Hammerskin Brothers & Sisters around the world. Family & Children are welcome and there will be childrens’ areas and activities available.”
Or maybe not.
Still, in Melbourne, Victoria this coming Saturday (October 13) there will be another gathering of the Hammerskins, in a political context much more supportive of their racism, and in the absence of both organised opposition and even the tiniest degree of attention from the corporate/state media.
Or maybe not.
Extra! Extra! Read all about it! Sherwood Elks leader says lodge was duped by boneheads! Extra! Extra!
Sherwood Elks leader says his lodge was duped by [bonehead] group
October 7, 2007
The leader of the Sherwood Robin Hood Elks said Sunday that his group was duped into hosting a neo-Nazi group at its lodge on Saturday. “We just got completely hoodwinked on this one,” said Tony Baker of Beaverton, exalted ruler of the lodge off Oregon 99W in Sherwood. “They just used us to put on their event.”
Lodge members were told they were renting to a group of rock musicians getting together for a reunion, not 100 or so [boneheads] who are part of Hammerskin Nation, Baker said. In fact, they never saw any banners, signs, literature or other indications of neo-Nazi activity, he said.
The Hammerskin Nation, one of the nation’s best-organized [bonehead] groups, came to Portland this weekend for its annual convention. The group refused to say where the three-day event would be held.
The Elks got suspicious when they began getting nonstop phone calls, most of them anonymous, accusing them of supporting a racist group. Those were followed by calls from the media and Sherwood police. Finally, Elks members confronted group members and asked them to leave, Baker said. The group left, never admitting that they were anything other than who they said they were.
Baker was relieved — even as the accusations continued. “I had people call me who were hyperventilating,” he said. “Until yesterday, I didn’t know what a Hammerskin was.” The Elks would have never rented to the group had they known who they really were, he said. Their whole organization stands for “leaving your biases behind,” he said.
All but one band played. Then we just went to the next venue and continued with the show. Good times had by all.