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A Day in the Life of the KKK: Anthony Karen talks trust & photojournalism

By dpreview staff on Aug 15, 2013 at 02:05 GMT

Photographer Anthony Karen has built a career around gaining access to ostensibly inaccessible societies. After a trip to Haiti documenting Vodou rituals, he has gone on to photograph white supremacist groups, the infamous Westboro Baptist Church and the Ku Klux Klan. His compelling photos and unrestricted access to the KKK resulted in a collaboration with the Discovery Channel, and slate.com has published an interesting profile of his work, in which he explains his approach. 

A Southern-based Ku Klux Klan member. Photo by Anthony Karen.

In Slate.com's profile of Karen he explains his methods. Of his approach to storytelling, Karen says "I prefer documenting long-term stories, because I feel a story can always be improved upon; there's always some nuance that you'll discover with subsequent trips. This methodology has proven helpful as I develop as a photojournalist."

A member of the Louisiana-based Dixie Rangers of the Ku Klux Klan displays her custom-made wedding veil as her fiancé looks on. Photo by Anthony Karen.

Slate also quotes an earlier interview with FotoEvidence, in which Karen spoke about earning trust with members of these extremely secretive societies. "I spend time with people, I listen to what they have to say, and I treat each person as an individual. I don't have to believe what they believe, but whenever I’m in someone's space, I feel I'm obliged to observe without judgment.That's not to say I wouldn't intervene if I felt a situation called for it, but I choose to observe moment to moment and simply take in what I see and experience without presumption or pretext."

Members from a Midwestern-based Klan realm on a flyer drive. Photo by Anthony Karen.

Many photographers will identify with his statement on self-critique: "The more time and experience I amass, the deeper my self-criticism has become, even in editing, but hopefully always for the better of a project. I find I challenge myself more and always strive to go even deeper."

Read the full article from Slate and take a look at more of Anthony Karen's work via the links below. 

Via: Slate, Source: Anthony Karen

Comments

Total comments: 188
peterblaise
By peterblaise (8 months ago)

Earlier, marike6 wrote, "... Hate Speech is against the law in the US, so no, people absolutely cannot say ALL stupid stuff ..."

You can hate, but you can't hurt.

The First Amendment protects Freedom of Speech, so of course people can and do say all sorts of hateful stuff, and we-the-people's self-governance fight to protect that right.

It's against the law to hurt others; speech that cascades into hurtful actions becomes a great source of civil (and perhaps criminal) liability; the Southern Poverty Law Center's suits bankrupt the KKK over this.

Me? I get frustrated when people think that photography is a permissioned activity, and they have superior rights over my own photography, over my speech, over my free speech.

Photography is speech; photography is free speech; let's all participate in the discussion by making cameras and photography as normal and expected everywhere, all the time, photographing everything -- let's keep our cameras in sight and in use wherever we are.

0 upvotes
b craw
By b craw (8 months ago)

Certainly there is not anything completely novel in this work. The idea of access has been an intrinsic concern of photojournalism from the onset: Reis, Evans, Lange and on and on. And, also, for photographers not overtly thought of as photojournalists - much of Arbus' work speaks to the idea access. And this motif continues to present. Taryn Simon and her images of cryogenic chambers, interiors of nuclear facilities, etc. are removed from standard notions of photojournalism yet very resonant within wider artistic dialogues relating to issues of representation. And so, I tend to relate to Karen's work perhaps as more closely positioned to this dialog about representation than photojournalism, although he and the author of the article put it firmly in the cadre of photojournalism. I suppose this might be reduced to semantics. The edges of categorizations seem to be quickly dissolving in contemporary circumstance. The five W's mentioned in a previous post hit my ear as forgotted dogma. But who can claim its outmodedness definitely? I am certainly not comfortable in doing so. While I feel more resonance in Simon's articulation of the forbidden, her work and Karen's seem interested in very different things. The latter, featured here, focuses on select taboo groups - although it can be argued that they are soft taboos, and in the saturated media culture we exist in currently, access seems hardly groundbreaking. Still, I think in terms of methodology - an actively removed judgement - there are some interesting results here, and decently compelling photographs. In terms of representation, they are images neither celebratory nor critical. That is not to say that they can be described as truly objective, a next to impossible task in photography of any sort. But, these images interest me more than a potentially heavy-handed exposés of these groups would; and I believe such work would lack a certain control and nuance shown here. Any moral component, should there be one, comes from a dialog more by-product of rather than commentary in this work. And this is not to entirely dismiss the moralizing criticism of some taking issue with the production and promotion of these images. I am just choosing not to have that be the basis of my commentary.

0 upvotes
Nigel Wilkins
By Nigel Wilkins (8 months ago)

Weird...everyone's complaining about the subject, but I haven't seen one comment on the quality of the photography, which I find to be inspirational!
(sorry if I missed someones comment about the actual photography, but it's been drowned by all the self righteous commentary).

It seems ironic to me loads of people are complaining about the photographers subjects, yet completely ignore the photography!!

4 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

What do you find so inspiring about the photography in the above three images? It's certainly far better than I could do, but "inspirational"? I may be missing something though.

Is it that the photographer broke rules compositionally by cutting off body parts? Is it the light? Compositions? Post-processing?

National Geographic and NY Times have photojournalist who are technically and artistically superb. I get both delivered and the photography is stunning.

The most interesting aspect of the above images is the subject matter, IMHO. The photography? I'm wondering what you and DPR found so "compelling" about the above images.

As for "all the self-righteous commentary", it's completely understandable in this case, wouldn't you say? With any anti-social behavior, crime or child slavery, for example, it's not at all unreasonable for the average person to raise moral questions. Not sure what you object to and why you consider commenters as being "self-righteous" but OK.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Nigel Wilkins
By Nigel Wilkins (8 months ago)

"What do you find so inspiring about the photography in the above three images? It's certainly far better than I could do..."

When someone does something better than I could, I find it inspirational.

It's nothing technical at all, nor the three images above. I like the whole body of work which tells a story & makes me wonder how in this day & age such groups still exist & how they can be so open about it & apparently proud. It's a powerful set of images.

"Not sure what you object to and why you consider commenters as being "self-righteous" but OK"

I object to people suggesting these articles should not be shown because they don't happen agree with them. What gives them the right to decide what others (I) should or shouldn't see? I'm glad I've seen these images as it's given me a perspective I haven't seen.

0 upvotes
snapperZ
By snapperZ (8 months ago)

I don't see this as glorifying the Klan. I look at this and see that parts of poor white America haven't progressed since the 1950s. Nothing aspirational about ugly people in ugly locations with their ugly ideas and beliefs. Almost inspires pity but worthwhile photographically IMO.

9 upvotes
NotSteve
By NotSteve (8 months ago)

What is the point of photojournalism, or journalism for that matter? I just don't get the point of this photo essay. At best, it is vacuous and states a very silly truism -- gaining trust of one's subject matter as a photographer is important.

What news is Karen trying to bring out? The existence of the Klan is not a news flash. What burning social questions is he trying to address?

In Canada, activists did serious to make sure the Klan could not come north. Their politics are truly reactionary and retrograde, and the Slate article portrays them as some quaint, obscure, secret society. The fact that he (and Slate and DPR) seems to have to little to say about an organization that has as history of seriously criminal activities, seems to be an indictment of photojournalism/journalism, more than anything else.

Comment edited 7 minutes after posting
5 upvotes
NotSteve
By NotSteve (8 months ago)

What would anyone of your say if someone posted this series on one of the forums? Nice captures? Good lighting?

Isn't this what people talk about when they refer to the banality of evil?

I don't get his indifference to such a serious subject matter. I'm reminded of the lyrics to a song by Rage Against the Machine -- "Some of those that work forces are the same that burn crosses." Is that where he is coming from as a former Marine?

What's next, one wonders? A photo essay or book on child molesters, people into bestiality? Surely that will give Mr. Karen a nice challenge in gaining people's trust.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

The history is well documented, and is the past. What's the reality like for a family which sees the KKK not as we outside see it, but as something which brings worth to their lives? How can that view of theirs be altered? It's easy to sit in a comfortable chair and say "they're evil because of the history of the organization", but all that will do is entrench them even more.

Their ideals may be twisted and wrong to us, but simply stating that won't change them. It takes a lot more, an ability to change the undermining of those values, and that can't be done through just stonewalling them.

And if a negative or destructive message gets out the solution is not to block it from coming out, thus making it mysterious, but to bring it into the light and counter it with reasoned argument, showing the flaws in it. Anyone claiming to be convinced by the platform provided here was already convinced.

0 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

+1. It's odd that the book that Slate is promoting is called "White Pride" without the slightest hint of irony. As a white man when I see images of groups like this all I feel is shame and embarrassment.

And I felt quite isolated in my objections below to this article and to the Klan in general. And a few posters below vehemently objected to my raising concerns as if groups like this are perfectly socially acceptable.

7 upvotes
NotSteve
By NotSteve (8 months ago)

theswede, your rationalizations/justifications for this why this item about the Klan is journalistically/socially relevant are quite a stretch.

You suggest that people look down on them from a comfortable existence. Their social conditions have dehumanized/marginalized them but instead of rising above it, they've been incited to take up as their burning cross to bear to inflict the same on others.

People actively oppose racism in the U.S. and elsewhere by fighting for their rights. What's comfortable about that? People even do it with photography/photojournalism. I can't see that this is what Karen/Slate/DPR are doing. They present Karen's work as a peculiar kind of voyeurism. None of them say what you claim, that promoting this work has an aim to reach out to the Klan and sort them out.

Are you saying that now you feel compelled to get out of your armchair engage with your local Klansmen and show them the error of their ways? Let us know how that works out for you.

Comment edited 41 seconds after posting
2 upvotes
NotSteve
By NotSteve (8 months ago)

marike6, yeah, I don't get the indifference or that this is somehow just any old photographic subject. There are people alive today who lived through a period in the U.S. when lynching was not uncommon.

If someone started dropping the n-word on the forums, how long would that last? Why do Karen/Slate/DPR want to promote the Klan, which does far worse?

Maybe the best thing is to check out of this thread and not contribute any more undue attention to it.

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

NotSteve, I'm right there with you. I spent yesterday and today trying to reason with people and voice my displeasure about the reprinting to the Slate article here only to be shouted down by the pack.

A few others also pointed out that this article is bad form, and that some users might not be comfortable with the piece but apparently the term "photojournalism" can provide cover for pretty much anything, no matter how bizarre. Maybe there is a strange fascination with extremist groups, like a train wreck that you can't look away from. ???

Some brought up censorship, but hate speech is illegal. And certainly the cross burning image in the original Slate.com article would at the very least qualify as highly objectionable due to the history of how cross burning is used by the Klan. It has in fact been outlawed in 2003 (Virginia vs Black) even though cases must also show intent to intimidate.

But I'm glad that someone else is recognizing some of the issues of this article.

1 upvote
speculatrix
By speculatrix (8 months ago)

people who see the KKK and go on to assume all white people are going to be bigoted and racialist, are just as prejudiced as people who see a news story about a black criminal and assume all black people are criminal.

therefore, I feel no shame at being a white male, the same as the KKK male gang members.

what I feel shame is that our society still has living members of these kinds of organisations; that the spotlight of progressive multiculturalism and education hasn't shone into these dark corners of the USA and shown them for what they are.

0 upvotes
b craw
By b craw (8 months ago)

marike6: I am certainly not a Constitutional scholar but hate speech much be far more direct than most believe in order to depart from Constitutional free speech protection. For instance, if one were to display a Nazi-appearing swastika (nevermind other historical uses of the swastika) that is not hate speech as it is not a direct declaration of hate, but rather a speculation of the intent of the symbol. Overt literature by these groups can be targeted, but often it is the incitement of violence that becomes the means of limiting speech and violation of law. They may be uncomfortable and objectionable to many but the whole body of images here come no where remotely close to meeting the burden of free
speech exemption.

0 upvotes
InTheMist
By InTheMist (8 months ago)

There are powerful images - they keep drawing me back.

They tell a story, they show juxtapositions, they're shocking yet human and they have good composition.

All people care around here any more is "sharp"?

Anyone with a problem with these images has a problem with journalism and freedom of the press.

3 upvotes
dblues
By dblues (8 months ago)

Ha! Dats what I talkn' 'bout!

0 upvotes
Lea5
By Lea5 (8 months ago)

I went straight to the website of Anthony Karen. There are many other very good galleries. Have a look.

2 upvotes
mcshan
By mcshan (8 months ago)

DPR, several posts have been deleted. The posted photos caused a reaction and it would have been better to just go with it. If not than why bother in the first place?

6 upvotes
DonM999
By DonM999 (8 months ago)

He is aiming at a cockroach on the paper on the wall. A woman and a child are cowering against any potential ricochet. Is this a powerful social statement or just another instance of the truism, "All you need for a movie is a girl and a gun"

1 upvote
ScottyNV
By ScottyNV (8 months ago)

Wade Davis investigated the 'Voudo' of Haiti many years ago, this is hardly a new frontier for Mr. Karen to break into. The KKK, while noteworthy, is in reality quite boring and extremely fringe segment of society. Westboro Baptist Church, well they get enough press already - no need to give them more.

I fail to see the deep end of this investigative journalism.

2 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

I don't think I have seen an article about the KKK in the last ten years or more. If I have it has just been a footnote. To most of the world they're a mysterious, almost completely unknown organization, and the way they live is a complete blank.

That has just changed. And the revelation has removed much of the air of mystery from the organization.

2 upvotes
justinwonnacott
By justinwonnacott (8 months ago)

The article and Karen's website lack a lot to read about in terms of the KKK and the journalist's five w's (who , what , when. where and why.)

1 upvote
rallyfan
By rallyfan (8 months ago)

So guys, if this article generates enough clicks, would you consider a follow-up on something like cannibalistic infanticide? It might get some click-throughs to the Gearshop site.

2 upvotes
Miwok
By Miwok (8 months ago)

Oh no! We want only articles about cats and flowers pictures! :)

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
10 upvotes
rallyfan
By rallyfan (8 months ago)

How about camera tests instead?

Wouldn't it be great if there were a website that tested digital cameras and gear?

0 upvotes
WellyNZ
By WellyNZ (8 months ago)

@rallyfan,

...which this website quite clearly provides and to suggest otherwise is utterly ridiculous.

The internet is not limited by size. It is quite possible for a website such as DPReview to provide reviews of cameras and gear (as it does very well) AND provide stories that are related to the subject of digital photography.

I don't see what your problem is, excepting the subject matter of the story?

1 upvote
rallyfan
By rallyfan (8 months ago)

If your, um, "insight" is limited to such epiphanies as "the internet is not limited by size" it is not surprising that you cannot see the problem.

This "story" is "related to the subject of digital photography" only in the sense that there are photographs provided. The site's title is "Digital Photography Review" and whenever someone points out that a review of one model or another isn't there yet, or isn't there at all, a staffer will point out that "reviews take time" or "we have so many things to review" etc. -- provided of course they respond at all.

Given the excuses, I'd rather see more attention paid to reviews rather than fluff "articles" intended simply to drive more traffic to the site.

0 upvotes
Edward Crim
By Edward Crim (8 months ago)

Your statement about Anthony Karen, that he "has gone on to photograph white supremacist groups, the infamous Westboro Baptist Church and the Ku Klux Klan." implies that Westboro Baptist Church is a whie supremacist group akin to the KKK, which is not true. Fred Phelps, for all his vitriol against homosexuals, does not profess the superiority of the white "race", but rather the opposite. He was active in the civil rights movement at a time when few other attorneys were (yes, he is an attorney). He took cases others wouldn't. He and his followers argue that race is inconsequential to standing in law. Read the article linked below.

http://www.cnn.com/2010/US/05/05/hate.preacher/index.html

Comment edited 29 seconds after posting
1 upvote
rallyfan
By rallyfan (8 months ago)

I believe you are correct. I heard one of his children on the radio; she said she is a civil rights lawyer.

1 upvote
Jonathan F/2
By Jonathan F/2 (8 months ago)

He's a white guy, photographing other white people. It's not like he dressed up as a lion and gained the trust of a pride of lions. Not exactly what I call hard photojournalism.

4 upvotes
toyak
By toyak (8 months ago)

Probably should read more about the KKK and what it stands for and on occasion does or tries to do. It is not just a race hate group.

0 upvotes
mcshan
By mcshan (8 months ago)

It takes more than skin color to define who a person is.

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

Some are trying to make this about free speech, suggesting that DPR is some beacon lighting the way for free speech by posting "A Day in the Life of the KKK" stories. DPR uses an expletive filter as curse words offend some users. Just like some don't want to read curse words, some users don't want to login to DPR to see "A Day in the Life of the KKK" images. Even though this story is more about photographing the secretive, typically clandestine KKK, some users may find these images offensive because of what the KKK stands for. In that sense they are not appropriate for DPR.

So I'm not interested in seeing stories dealing with extremists as there are enough great photographers covering more positive things to last a whole year of stories. Obviously others with different perspectives aren't outraged by groups like this. That's fine too. But judging by the extremely contentious comments I'd say that politics or ethics are not at all good topic for a site like DPR.

4 upvotes
justinwonnacott
By justinwonnacott (8 months ago)

I am not sure that those people you refer to as "Some users do not want to login to DPR and see a day in the life of the KKK" are a majority, or that politics and ethics are not a good topic for DPR.
I want to see pictures made by a photographer with something to say that support discussion about issues and ideas. Such pictures deal with the way things "Look" rather than repeating the ubiquitous fantasies of lifestyle advertising, fashion & celebrity bumpf that plaques our visual culture.Your suggestion to use " great photographers covering more positive things" is just as contentious ethically and politically. Anthony Karen's work shows the tendency of photographers to "point the camera down" as a strategy. There is always an audience for images of others who are different in preference to looking at ourselves.
Most of Anthony Karen's portfolios on his website deal with the USA - would criticisms about his work be so strong if it dealt with a world further away?

4 upvotes
calking
By calking (8 months ago)

@Marike6.....Yeah, or just ignore articles like this and go back to brawling with the boys over pixel density and ISO performance between cameras, which s why you're REALLY here, isn't it!

Comment edited 59 seconds after posting
4 upvotes
rallyfan
By rallyfan (8 months ago)

I come here to use the comparison tools for gear.

This is an article about... another article that happened to have pictures.

I'd have rather seen a review of the now-superseded Panasonic G5. Why? Because this was a camera review site.

1 upvote
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

I'm more offended by shows like Breaking Bad glorifying violence and extremist approaches to life. The one thing I have taken away from the photos shown here is how much I do not want a life like the one they live, and how much less mysterious and glamorous it is then it seems when marginalized and pushed out of view.

0 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@justinwonnacott Not critical of Karen who is just doing his thing. DPR found the Slate article compelling and thought people here would enjoy a link to it (and judging by the comments, most did). It's their website.

@calking You are right, people who aren't interested in creepy White Supremacy groups or how a white photographer got close enough to them to publish a book called "White Pride" (available on iTunes or your favorite bookseller) can ignore the Slate article or the above reference to the Slates article.

As for why I come here, DPR is a photo gear website where people come to talk about photo gear and read camera reviews. Shocking.

@theswede
Breaking Bad does not glorify violence or drugs. Watch the show instead of copying what others he have incorrectly written in this thread.
Type the "KKK" into Google for 38 million hits and 11,000 hits on Amazon. Stacks and stacks of volumes have been written about them, they have not been "pushed out of view".

Comment edited 11 minutes after posting
1 upvote
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

And how many of those hits and books are about the everyday life of KKK members? This is the first I have ever seen published about that, removing the air of mystery and the radical view on a secretive and exclusive organization.

As to your denial of the selling aspects of Breaking Bad, that tells us a lot about your worldview. And no, you do not speak for most educated people in the US and worldwide; you hardly even speak for yourself. You only whine.

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@theswede

Whatever. There are literally hundreds of complete volumes, thousands of articles and a number of films devoted to the KKK. Photos don't tell a thing about their abhorrent views or their many misdeeds throughout history.

Nobody is stopping you from learning about Klan.

But don't try to lecture me about my worldview, or moralize about a fictional TV show. I could not possibly care less what you think about me or American television.

0 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

I know about the KKK already. What I don't know is how the members live, what their homes are like. Now I got a glimpse into that, in addition to learning about how a photojournalist goes about getting such a glimpse into a secretive world.

By contrast, all I get from you are whining and defensive comments about how "most" people agree with your whining.

Tell you what, if this offends you so badly you can't stop your whining, go someplace else!

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@theswede

Go cry to someone else because I could possibly not care less about your fascination with the Klan, your disapproval of other comments or anything else you have to say.

You want to make this personal, but I have ZERO interest in stepping into your world. Find someone else to annoy.

Have a wonderful day.

0 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

You care enough to whine about how people find value in reading how a photojournalist steps into normally hidden worlds, and to express offense on behalf of other people for it.

It's clear you have no interest in stepping outside your prejudice. Good thing you at least acknowledge it.

1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@theswede, you obviously don't know a thing about prejudice in the United States. I would never try to lecture you about race relations in Sweden, so don't try to teach me about prejudice here in the US.

Save the lectures for someone who gives a sh**.

I'm not your buddy, I'm not your dad, so go cry to someone else.

All the best...

0 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

Having lived in the US, in some, shall we say, less desirable parts of town, I apparently know more than you. And at the very least I can take a stand for what I hold and not hide behind "most educated people in the US and worldwide" (as if) or "most" people here, or even "if I was black".

If you have beef with the article, state it clearly and stand for it. If you don't, stop your tepid whining.

And you are quite correct you're not my buddy; my buddies stand for what they say, and don't say "all the best" and "have a wonderful day" after hurling vapid insults.

3 upvotes
capanikon
By capanikon (8 months ago)

I always wonder if sites like dpreview get permission from the photographer to publish photos like the KKK ones on this page or if they just grab 'em and give credit to the photographer.

1 upvote
rallyfan
By rallyfan (8 months ago)

I've made a guess!

0 upvotes
Tlipp
By Tlipp (8 months ago)

Does the dude with the Bud have a shiner or is that some kind of shadow?

0 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

If you can't tell I'd say you need a new monitor. ;)

1 upvote
samhain
By samhain (8 months ago)

@DPR
Please don't let the knee-jerk reactions about race by some people commenting in this thread prevent you from covering future stories about photographers who shoot controversial subjects.
This was a great article about a great photographer.
All signal, no noise.

18 upvotes
rallyfan
By rallyfan (8 months ago)

On a gear review site?! This is 100% noise; it's an unabashed click grab.

1 upvote
alfredo_tomato
By alfredo_tomato (8 months ago)

The best way to hold onto power is to pit one group against another. The biggest fear of the ruling class is if the poor of all races and religion see the predatory capitalist and bought off politician as the enemy, not their neighbor.

The haters like the Klan, Tea Party, and the Nation of Islam play right into the hands of those who profit from our division. The monied class wants us fighting over the scraps that trickle down on us. Wake up, grow up.

5 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (8 months ago)

I agree with you mostly but the TEA Party is just old people who don't want to be taxed to death. Lots of propaganda against them because they want a smaller govt and less spend and tax. How is that extreme or racist? Cries of racism are usually a sign of loss of an argument or a shake down. The real enemy is big govt and those who bribe them not the left or right or fringe elements.

9 upvotes
rb59020
By rb59020 (8 months ago)

alfredo, get a job!

6 upvotes
M DeNero
By M DeNero (8 months ago)

Enjoy your expensive camera equipment!

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

The Tea Party want to complain about taxes which are the lowest out of any developed nation in the world, yet they have zero problem accepting government assistance like Medicare and Medicaid.

So they want small government when it comes time to pay taxes and big government when they need healthcare assistance.

3 upvotes
DonM999
By DonM999 (8 months ago)

All photographers are welcome to come to Tea Party meetings. You can picture us saying the Pledge of Allegiance. If you are quick, you can get a shot of one of our extreme members picking up litter, we are known for that.

5 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (8 months ago)

Marike6
I don't want the US to be on par with the rest of the world. The govt does not need half my money or even a quarter. Govt is just a business with a mafia twist. All those big govt dependent programs need to be gotten rid of. Johnson and his "The Great Society" is just fancy wording for govt dependence.

1 upvote
Just another Canon shooter
By Just another Canon shooter (8 months ago)

You have to be very extreme to put the Tea Party and the KKK in one group. That would make you an interesting object to photograph, I guess.

Comment edited 14 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Chris Yates
By Chris Yates (8 months ago)

Why are all the places in the photos "Dumps".

1 upvote
alfredo_tomato
By alfredo_tomato (8 months ago)

Because they are as poor as those they want to keep down.

4 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (8 months ago)

We pay so much attention to external threats and keeping people out that it's easy to forget who's already here.

7 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (8 months ago)

And so many here want to continue ignorning them. Fighting ignorance and hatred with more ignorance and hatred won't accomplish anything. Pity these people, try to educate them, and use kindness to counter their evil. And the second they threaten anyone with violence make it clear it won't be tolerated, but never fire the first shot. And should you be forced to fire the second shot aim true.

Comment edited 5 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
ClickBoom
By ClickBoom (8 months ago)

Good, thought provoking, photojournalism. He is not glamorizing them just presenting his take on their small part of human society.

I happen to be a photographer and a mixed race person.

8 upvotes
ClickBoom
By ClickBoom (8 months ago)

I think that it is valuable work to document their existence and way of life. They do exist and as they do, it is better that we understand them and their reasons for being a member of such an organization.

Capturing events as they happen is part of photojournalism. We are used to seeing all sorts of terrible images from wars and revolutions around the world.

This mixed race photographer is well aware of what that organization would make of me.

Sorry for replying to myself I just wrote a reply to a comment that was removed and I don't want to wast most of my reply.

1 upvote
mischivo
By mischivo (8 months ago)

Just out of curiosity: do the members of the KKK that Mr. Karens photographs know that he fraternized with...wait for it...Haitians? :-)

0 upvotes
mcshan
By mcshan (8 months ago)

By reading the many posts apparently it is good policy to not photograph groups you disagree with and they will go away. I want the actions of the KKK, New Black Panthers, Al-Qaeda on and on documented. Shine a light on each. What should not be done is promotion through a politically correct lens. That is when photography becomes dangerous.

19 upvotes
Matt1645f4
By Matt1645f4 (8 months ago)

Totally Agree and i suspect that the majority of people who have commented (myself included) Also agrees no matter what there Political leaning is left, right, centre white black etc etc

0 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

When stores refused to carry Rolling Stone magazine with the Boston bomber on the cover, I didn't agree with their decision, but I could understand it. Glorification of violent, extremist or racist groups, intentional or unintentional, is never a good thing.

But the KKK and Nazism for example, are some of the most written about groups in history. There are volumes and volumes of literature on these groups. So no, I don't think that it's a story that needs to be told. It's been told, over and over again.

Free speech laws in the US cover everything but hate speech. But photographing or writing about these groups is fine.

The problem is a story showing the KKK in everyday life humanizes them, whether intentional or not. Shining a light on extremist groups may sound like a good idea, if somewhat idealistic, but judging by how prevalent racism continues to be, I'd say marginalizing them is a better course of action.

3 upvotes
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

Like it or not these people are actually HUMAN. The term "humanizing" really makes no sense semantically because humans have proven all through history to be inherently violent and aggressive.

You want to talk about hate and death? How many wars have been about religion and and how many have been about race?

12 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

Humanize (verb)
1. Make (something) more humane or civilized.
2. Give (something) a human character.

Sorry but if you think a group that used terrorism and extreme violence like lynching are anything but monsters then we have a difference of opinion.

5 upvotes
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

Haha, I just saw that you posted on the "Breaking Bad" article that you thought The Sopranos and Breaking Bad were two of the best TV shows.

Don't you think that that those TV shows "humanize" and even GLORIFY murderous drug dealers and gangsters? Hypocritical much *dude*?

7 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

marike6, the US government today will kill those it does not like with remote controlled bombs. That is much more extreme violence than lynching, and is what the US government itself calls terrorism. Just using violence does not make anyone a monster. One has to understand what's behind a behaviour in order to change it.

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

They are two of the best shows and I'm not alone in feeling that way as they have won more Emmy and industry awards than pretty much any other two dramas. But they are fictional and not at all related to this topic.

Besides, the violence on those shows is not at all gratuitous, nor is it meant to glorify. They deal with morally conflicted characters who appear to lead normal suburban lives but whose behavior is deeply antisocial.

1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@theswede
Some would argue that the US is at war, and in fact they are.

But lynching someone simply because they have dark skin absolutely does make you a monster. Why do you think that's normal, humane behavior that can be "understood"?

Even a 10 year old understands what is behind the behavior of the KKK - hate.

2 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

@marike6
Some would argue the KKK is at war, and who are you to decide either way?

I see some 10 year olds in the photos of the KKK linked here. Do they hold the same biased view of reality you do? Do they think the lives of their relatives are governed by hate? Do their relatives? Do the KKK wizards? Who elected your their spokesperson and/or judge?

In short, where do you think you get the right to speak for the rest of us and decide what we should and should not see photos of?

3 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@theswede

"My biased view of reality"? Are you joking? I can judge them because historically their behavior has been antisocial, even sociopathic. My view of the KKK and all violent extremist groups is the conventional one, shared by the majority of normal, educated people in the US and worldwide.

Nowhere did I say that DPR doesn't have the right to publish whatever it wants to or that I spoke for anyone but myself.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 10 minutes after posting
1 upvote
M DeNero
By M DeNero (8 months ago)

Marike6 is selective with the definitions of "Humanize" presented. Another valid definition is, "To portray or endow with human characteristics or attributes; make human".

JDThomas makes good points. The members of the KKK are human. They are NOT unique, there are groups with similar outlooks all over the world, so the KKK without doubt illustrates part of the human character, though they're an extreme manifestation of our dark side. What is useful about these photos, besides the photographer having earned the trust of the KKK, is that the photos in their blunt, documentary nature show how sad and devoid of dynamism these people are.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

@marike6,
Again, who elected you spokesperson and decided YOUR biased view is "the conventional one"? Link will do.

And you claim you speak for "the majority of educated people in the US and worldwide" in the very comment you claim you speak only for yourself.

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@theswede

Extremism - One who advocates or resorts to measures beyond the norm, especially in politics.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extremist_Groups#United_States

Are you actually arguing that the Klan has a valid opinion, and asking "who am I do decide that their point of view is extreme"? I don't know if there are similar groups in Sweden, but I can assure you the majority of people in the US don't consider their extreme views on race to be socially acceptable or normal. The whole concept of "extremism" is that it's outside the conventions and mores of society.

@M DeNero

The definition I gave of Humanize is from Merriam-Webster.

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/humanize

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 8 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

@marike6
I am arguing that the pictures and stories should stand for themselves, without your biased prejudice. You've already decided the humans depicted aren't worthy to be depicted, and you have decided that "the majority of educated people in the US and worldwide" are with you.

We're not. For the most part us "educated people" have a nuance understanding of the world and know that people do not become extremists because they're caricatures. And we most certainly do not advocate marginalizing humans in an effort to suppress them.

In short, "educated people in the US and worldwide" consider you an extremist, and your stance abhorrent.

3 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@theswede

You misunderstood. Above, you asked "who am I to judge the Klan"? To which I said that the majority of the world considers groups like the Klan, Neo-Nazis, etc as extreme in their views which are outside of the mainstream. That's all I said.

I never said people shouldn't photograph or write about them. Much has been written about the Klan. But yes, I do believe that groups like this should be, and are already marginalized. We are living in a post racial society in many ways, and old notions of racial divisions are becoming less valid. And hate based solely on racial and religious differences is extremely prevalent in all modern societies but should not be.

Maybe because you are not American, you don't understand the kind of pain such groups like the Klan have caused normal, hardworking African-Americans, but I stand with my African American brothers and sisters.

But I'm not advocating censorship at all, but don't feel DPR is the place for Klan images.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

@marike6: You are such a HYPOCRITE. Haha. Because it's on TV and fictional and wins awards makes it OK? If there was a television show that had the KKK on it cracking racist jokes and killing people would you find it compelling as long as it had a good camera work and scripting?

And using Breaking Bad as an example. Season 5 episode 8. Walt PAYS people from the Aryan Nation prison gang to MURDER people. They never even make a point that it's WRONG. And you're OK with that? How is that NOT glamorizing racism, drug dealing, and murder? Because it's a TV show?

You're a straight up HYPOCRITE if you can say that DPR reposting an article about a PHOTOGRAPHER is not OK, but glorifying drugs, racism, and murder in the name of "entertainment" is OK.

Programs like Breaking Bad and the Sopranos are way more subversive because the DO entertain and make heroes out of villains.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@JDThomas First of all, I never said DPR didn't have a right to post images of the KKK. Of course they do. Like others here, I said that even though the article is not really about the Klan per se it's a sensitive, highly charged topic.

As far as Breaking Bad, most normal people realize that such shows are FICTION. A work of art that portrays violence and human nature as part of the story is not at all the same as an action film with tons of bloodshed and gratuitous violence. If you don't understand that, you either haven't seen either show, or perhaps you don't understand the subtle difference.

But seriously, jump down off my back. All I said was that images of the KKK may not be the best choice of subject matter for a wide range of DPR members. It's a bit insensitive to assume that ALL people have a high tolerance for portrayals of an extremist group like the Klan. A black southerner, for example, might have a totally different reaction to these images than you or I.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

You just completely ignore your hypocritical statements. You make my argument for me. To wit:

"most normal people realize that such shows are FICTION"

Most normal people also realize that these KKK people portrayed in the photos don't have an acceptable view of humanity.

"It's a bit insensitive to assume that ALL people have a high tolerance for portrayals of an extremist group like the Klan. A black southerner, for example, might have a totally different reaction to these images than you or I."

Then it is also insensitive to air these violent TV shows over the public airwaves. An Italian American may be offended at the stereotypical portrayal of them as gangsters in the Sopranos. A white American may be offended by the fact that they only portray white people as meth addicts on Breaking Bad.

I'm not "on your back". I'm just pointing out the fundamental flaws in your logic.

And that's it. I don't have any more to say on the subject.

1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@JDThomas

I said "most normal people" when I should have said MOST PEOPLE realize Breaking Bad is a work of fiction and that violence is but a small part of the story, yet you continue to try to draw parallels to fictional images on TV to images of a real and dangerous extremist group.

I guess I'm not a fan of free publicity whether it's for the Klan or the Birther wackos. But I'm not in favor of censorship unless it's of hate groups or other extremists. Even then, censorship is a slippery slope.

But at this point I don't care anymore. I wish I had never entered this discussion. All the best.

0 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

@marike6
You alternate between "these people should not get free publicity" and "I am not against these people getting free publicity", you claim to speak for a majority of educated people around the world in this, and you use phrases like "if I was black".

You're not worth the effort. Continue building outrage over humans depicted as humans if you please. I no longer care.

1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@theswede

I said if I were a black DPR user I might not be too pleased with images of the Klan which is not related at all to comments about most educated people's views of extremist groups like the KKK.

Not sure what you are even arguing for, but seem to have an interest in almost defending the Klan as you keep talking sympathetically about "humans being being humans". I couldn't care less if they are humans. So are Nazis, Al Qaeda, Skinheads, et al. Being human doesn't give people the right to behave badly toward others of difference races or religions.

I read the newspaper and watch the news every single day, I don't come to DPR to see the Klan, militias, gangs, or terrorist groups.

Not trying to build outrage because obviously anything goes with DPR readers. Not my thing, but c'est le vie.

1 upvote
calking
By calking (8 months ago)

So ignore the content you don't like and focus on arguing camera specs with others, which is what this site is about.

And for what it's worth, I don't think "most" Americans are loving the tidal wave of illegal Mexican migrants into this country, including African-Americans. It's just not politically correct to complain about it.

2 upvotes
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

@marike6
Speaking for those poor, defenseless black people again, who need a white male to stand up for them, I see.

You're a piece of work.

2 upvotes
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

Are people actually READING the article? It's about Anthony Karen's methodology on photojournalism and trust. The subject is beside the point.

18 upvotes
ryan2007
By ryan2007 (8 months ago)

Does not matter. You are endorsing hate and racism with the subject matter. Their is no reason to give free advertising to these individuals. This is not typical art work to frame for your work office. Leave the photo's to the photographers personal web site. Is this web site regulated in any way by Countries that lack of a better way to say it, just frown on publicly expressing hatred and racism. Does Germany have and I thought they had a Neo-Nazi law and I know the US has laws like this. The photographers web site with photos of voodoo and showing what the Jews do as ritual is self contained to their way of life. The way of life for the KKK and Neo-Nazi's are to intentionally cause and perpetrate hate. Photography is one thing, subject matter is something else. You need to know your audience and again this web site reaches the World and everyone with internet access. It is just like a hate crime to promote or advertise. It is not responsible to publish this subject matter IMO

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
7 upvotes
Caleido
By Caleido (8 months ago)

@ ryan2007 Extremely ironic when you're asking for censorship because of the subject of these photos, don't you think.

13 upvotes
rb59020
By rb59020 (8 months ago)

Ryan, are you using an iPad under your bed?

5 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (8 months ago)

Ryan, educating the world and exposing us to a reality we would otherwise never see is a good thing. If you simply document the behavior of these people there is no promotion of hate or their ideas, but instead we get to see that people like this still exist and we have more work to do in order to eliminate hatred and ignorance. People become complacent when they don't see this kind of thing at their doorstep, so this can be seen as a reminder and a call to action.
The only way to fight hatred and ignorance is to love and educate. Sensoring the world will only serve to create more ignorance and misunderstanding. The only thing that should be outlawed is actively insighting violence. Banning books or certain speech or groups only gives them an air of importance they otherwise would not have, thus giving them more power. You can't fight ignorance by promoting ignorance.

7 upvotes
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

The article is not condoning racism nor is the photographer by covering it. Furthermore, none of the pictures shows any violence, racial or otherwise (aside from the killing of a roach by BB gun, which may be a poor choice of tool but no more a violent action than throwing a shoe at it). The photos show the lifestyle of a group of people you don't identify with. I've never seen this type of thing either. I find it strange and interesting that people like this exist. These photos aren't going to turn me racist by looking at them anymore than looking at Playboy centerfold will turn me into a sex fiend.

Ignoring something doesn't make it go away.

21 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

I agree with Ryan. I don't support ANYTHING that gives a platform to the KKK or any other such extremist group like Westboro Baptist. There are enough interesting topics for DPR to write about. Leave this stuff to the NY Times or Time magazine or the history books where it belongs.

Just like I won't listen to Howard Stern when he has that recurring KKK member on the air, I have no interest in reading about the Klan. I'm against censorship in all forms except when it come to "hate speech", but I think DPR could choose to avoid this subject for editorial reasons. Judging by some of the comments below equating the KKK with a positive group like NAACP, I think such articles tend to humanize and in a sense legitimatize extremist groups that should be completely marginalized forever, once and for all.

Comment edited 7 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
jjl
By jjl (8 months ago)

@Ryan... I hate to be the grammar police, but if you want to make a cogent argument, you need learn how to use English properly.

Personally, I think sunshine is the best antidote to hate groups. Give them a platform, and they'll show the world how idiotic they are. The photography excellent as well.

0 upvotes
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

@jjl: In Ryan's defense I don't think English is his first language.

@marike6: Just because you don't find the article interesting doesn't mean others don't. Last time I checked, and maybe Barney can correct me on this, but DPR doesn't exist solely for the purpose of entertaining YOU alone.

4 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@JDThoms I never said I didn't find the article interesting or the photography good. I said that I'm not in favor of DPR giving a platform, even indirectly to a subversive group like the KKK.

And not once did I say DPR didn't have the right to print whatever they choose or that it's sole purpose was to entertain me alone. How ridiculous. You must be joking.

Comment edited 50 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Barney Britton
By Barney Britton (8 months ago)

"DPR giving a platform, even indirectly to a subversive group like the KKK."

This is a bizarre leap of logic. We've featured the work of conflict photographers on here - does that mean we're promoting war? We've featured astrophotography - are we invading the privacy of alien beings?

9 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@Barnet Britton

It's the same as stores like CVS and Walmart not carrying the Rolling Stone cover featuring the Boston Bomber. For people in Boston for whom the pain of the bombing was a real and traumatic, seeing the Boston Bomber on the cover was too painful. Think of how your African American readers feel reading about the KKK in 2013. If I were black, even if I loved photography, the last group I would want to read about on my favorite photography website would be the KKK. Some topics are too painful, and bring up all kinds of issues that should not have to be re-lived over and over again.

And certainly astrophotography and a group with a history of lynching blacks and burning crosses are two completely different things.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 10 minutes after posting
1 upvote
wcbert
By wcbert (8 months ago)

"The subject is beside the point." What The...? The subject is the point he not going to photo an people playing bridge in a nurse home. BORING! He picked out the subject matter for better/worst would get the most attendtion.

The KKK as a "long" history of violence, just because there are no photos that show violence does not mean that this organization is not violent!

1 upvote
dccdp
By dccdp (8 months ago)

@Barney Britton: Sorry, but they are not at the same level. Documenting war is one thing, and it sometimes can become excessive, too. But "documenting" extremism is going too far. Extremist groups need publicity to go on, they crave any type of attention, and the best way of hurting them is to ignore them in spite of their efforts to make themselves heard. So, I'm sorry to say, but yes, dpr has inadvertently and indirectly provided a platform for them.

Comment edited 7 minutes after posting
1 upvote
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

wcbert: I never said the KKK wasn't violent. I was simply talking about this in terms of the ARTICLE itself. The actual article doesn't discuss KKK policy at all. The article talks about the PHOTOGRAPHER and his methods.

As far as marike6, this dude will have a dissenting opinion about almost anything and everything so any further discussion on his points is, well, pointless.

Comment edited 11 minutes after posting
1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@JDThomas

Whatever you say, *dude*. Seems like more people agree with me, so...nice try.

You keep making the same totally obvious point that the article was about photography over and over again, as if nobody here realizes that.

0 upvotes
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

@dccdp: "I'm sorry to say, but yes, dpr has inadvertently and indirectly provided a platform for them."

Do you think that these images are flattering enough that they will succeed in recruiting photographers that visit the DPR site to join the KKK?

If anything these photographs show the sad and pathetic existence of these people and anyone with any common sense would see these photos ad want to stay as far away from these people as possible.

There's a difference between documentary and propaganda photography.

5 upvotes
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

@marike6: I'm glad you get you ego stroked by the fact you think you have "more" people agreeing with you. It's pretty sad you need the approval of an internet forum to boost your self-esteem.

Apparently it's NOT obvious that the article is about photography because people like you are seeing it as some sort of propaganda for the KKK.

In any case, it's not worth arguing with you about it. I don't think DPR is going to remove the post. I've stated my opinion and if you don't agree with it that's cool. I'm done with it.

5 upvotes
Caleido
By Caleido (8 months ago)

This is exactly the same wrong, hypersensitive, context-ignoring reaction as the story with the deaf boy having to change his name in sign-language because some people said it looked like a gun.

This paranoia will eventually end in a deaf, blind and empty society.

2 upvotes
dccdp
By dccdp (8 months ago)

@JDThomas: DPR is a high traffic site. It attracts all kinds of people with the only common attribute of owning a camera. Sane people will probably see the "pathetic existence" you mentioned. But they are not the target of the "platform".

Before reading this I haven't even known that particular group still existed in a meaningful enough sense. Now I wonder... Please don't answer though. I'm not interested in their "way of life", as I am not interested at all in knowing the hobbies of -say - those criminals that were responsible for the Holocaust.

Comment edited 52 seconds after posting
1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@JDThomas

I don't know you are going on about "having my ego stroked. You said that I will ALWAYS have the dissenting opinion, but tons of people here are making the same points about the Klan.

Do you even read what you write? You are all over the place. The only thing sad is that you keep saying the same thing OVER and OVER again, while patting yourself on the back that you GET IT, and others DON'T. Everybody here understands.

A three year old knows that the story is about photojournalism, but that doesn't make a great choice of topic. What's next for DPR? "A year spent photographing a serial rapist". "A look at the wacky world of an axe murderer..."

1 upvote
Franklin J Ellias
By Franklin J Ellias (8 months ago)

@JDThomas: I guess we agree. I can't believe that those that are truly interested in education want to close out all that they disagree with. The only way to understand what those that hold differing views think, are about, is to communicate with them and understand them as much as possible. This does not mean that you agree with them.
To condem the author/photographer is controlling the flow of knowledge. The censorship of information leads to ignorance. I read and view as much as possible about all points of view. It helps me better understand the world that we live in. Your comments about the glorification of organized crime being acceptable and the KKK is not are well taken.

1 upvote
theswede
By theswede (8 months ago)

I would click a link to read "A look at the wacky world of an axe murderer". It'd be better than Breaking Bad anyway.

1 upvote
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

@marike6: I guess by dissenting opinion I meant that you are always arguing about something. Whether it's which lens is sharper or which camera has better features. You always seem to act like you know everything better than everyone else.

I bet if you ever do step out into the sunlight of the real world you're not as loud and opinionated as you are on the internet.

0 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@JDThomas wrote: "I bet if you ever do step out into the sunlight of the real world you're not as loud and opinionated as you are on the internet."

You don't know a thing about me, so maybe you should go back to your crossword puzzle and save you bets for bingo night. If not, perhaps I should remind you that personal attacks are against DPR policy. OK, dude.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 6 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
samhain
By samhain (8 months ago)

@Marike6 Yes, it's a great choice of topic. It's an article about an amazing photojournalist who's able to earn the the trust & shoot very secretive fringe groups that most aren't allowed access to. It's a brilliant topic for a photography website.
I mean- its as if your saying DPR shouldn't cover stories about photographers who shoot anything negative or controversial? To appease whom? People who have knee-jerk reactions anytime something like race & religion is even remotely mentioned? Perhaps you should re-read ClickBoom's post and explain to him why his point of view on this story is wrong...

Like JDThomas pointed out- You saying TV shows about meth cooks, killers & gangsters are your favorite, yet taking issue with this story is really hypocritical. Whether the shows are fiction or not is irelivent- they shed light & glorify murderers & drug dealers(whom exist in real life). And much, much more than this photographer & his photos. With those 2 shows- you actually find yourself routing for the bad guys.

2 upvotes
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

@marike6: That wasn't a personal attack, it was just an educated guess.

I find it pretty hilarious that you think I'm some old guy that does crosswords and plays bingo. I'm about as far away from that as possible.

I'll go back to taking photographs and playing punk rock music. Dude.

1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

@samhain Being opposed to what a group like the KKK stands for is not a knee-jerk reaction, it's the way I feel, and will always feel. You want to pretend to be some free speech at all cost advocate yet you say nothing about DPRs 1990s style expletive filter. Yes curse words offend some people and so does the Klan.

I have no idea what kind of parallel you guys are trying to draw with an award winning fictional TV show that happens to have some violence and a true to life hate group with a history of some of the most repugnant racially motivated violence this country has ever seen. I have no problem reading curse words but I have no interest in seeing images of the KKK. But I will defend DPRs right to print the images.

@JDThomas

It was a personal attack, and not at all a subtle one. Just so you know I'm a professional musician who has travelled to Europe on tour over 35 separate times. So you I'm guessing I've seen more sunlight and more of the world than you.

0 upvotes
calking
By calking (8 months ago)

So so stupid some of this is. If the piece were about a photojournalist documenting the real-life world of drug dealers or prison gangs some poor wimpy emotional Rodney King school of Cant We All Just Get Along forum head would be crying foul, claiming DPR is "advocating" drug use and prisoner behavior. If is someone documenting the homeless it's an invasion of privacy or advocating social irresponsibility or some silly thing that one of you wusses takes offense to. What is its a documentary on Putin, or Clinton, or Herman The Frog?

GROW UP and grow a pair some of you. If you just can't help but read content that sets off all your sensitivity alarms DON'T FLIPPING READ IT. If you do, spare the rest of us your crybaby emotional scarring. Act like an adult even if its in a forum where men spar like little boys over who has a better camera or lens or bag or SD card. Get back to your reason for being her to begin with, which is to demonstrate how right you are about camera equipment.

0 upvotes
calking
By calking (8 months ago)

I am also glad that this was not an article about a photographer who documented the inside goings-on in the Hostess Bakery. I don't think I could ever recover from knowing exactly how a Twinkie is made, and from what. Thanks DPR for not messing up my life and advocating being overweight and unhealthy eating.

0 upvotes
JDThomas
By JDThomas (8 months ago)

@marike6:

You always have to one-up EVERYONE all the time, don't you?

So now you're a professional photographer/professional musician who has toured ALL over the world?

All I see of you is a sad, angry, creepy little troll who argues with people on DPR at every turn.

So who have you toured with? What albums have you played on? I'd like to see your discography.

Then again, you'll probably come up with some good reason why you shouldn't reveal your illustrious musical career with me.

I doubt very much that you are a professional touring musician.

0 upvotes
audijam
By audijam (8 months ago)

this is photojournalism, period!

14 upvotes
samhain
By samhain (8 months ago)

His website:

http://www.anthonykaren.com/

2 upvotes
samhain
By samhain (8 months ago)

One of my favorite photojournalists today. His work is so clean & original, i just can't get enough of It.
Check out his website if you haven't already. Awe inspiring stuff.

4 upvotes
Artpt
By Artpt (8 months ago)

Thank you DPReview for posting this. The US is a melting pot of all sorts, to say the least....

From an enthusiast's perspective, I hope Anthony Karen can read some of the compliments in these threads to his convictions in capturing a glimmer of daily life in this group.

Much respect to his tolerance and professionalism, which was surely tested among the KKK. If these "pictures say a thousand words," we readers only hear what we are imagining would fit the photo. What is actually said during these photos is a blending of staggering contrast, both a demonstration of loyalty among a small group of impoverished outcasts and a proclamation of visceral hate that eventually numbs even the most sensitive of hearts.

Please continue to post these types of stories DPReview.

11 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (8 months ago)

Good job, much better than practically all modern "photojournalists". I wonder who pays for this - is the guy independently wealthy?

Now to the most dangerous of marginal groups - please document the affairs of corrupt politicians and government contractors.

12 upvotes
ianimal
By ianimal (8 months ago)

I animal, we are all animals.

0 upvotes
B1ackhat
By B1ackhat (8 months ago)

Too bad he only shot them with a camera. They're wasting precious oxygen on this earth.

6 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (8 months ago)

Being racist is not worthy of death. People have the freedom to be as stupid as they wish.

15 upvotes
lancespring
By lancespring (8 months ago)

Wasn't that Hitler's opinion of Jews? You are not in very good company by making remarks like this.

"They're wasting precious oxygen on this earth."

6 upvotes
Tryglaw
By Tryglaw (8 months ago)

Interesting reportage.
But, on the whole racism issue, one has to remember that these days, 2 out of 3 KKK members are FBI informants (and the third works for Southern Povery Law Center).
;)

6 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (8 months ago)

Yup.
These people are just idiots but if you want to see danger and racism go photograph gang members.

4 upvotes
alfredo_tomato
By alfredo_tomato (8 months ago)

The Klan is just a gang with religious and racial requirements.

4 upvotes
MrTaikitso
By MrTaikitso (8 months ago)

When I lived in the US (mainly California) for 10 years, whilst I did like the people from an integrity angle, I did get the feeling that the overly liberal attitude to freedom meant that there were a fair number of freaks. Those who had no self respect & horrifically overweight (the UK is catching up), those who spoke very loudly (obvious when they visit the UK and are on a train), wore fairly trashy clothes (also now common here in the UK), held strange views (mainly in middle America, like these folk I guess?) etc etc. And I assume this comes from the fact that here in the UK, we speak our minds and put people down who are somewhat off the rails. It can hurt, but it keeps (or did keep!) us Brits fairly respectable & tolerant, even if slightly xenophobic when it comes to change. These subjects are simply pretty simple & naive, like the terrorists who also project old school hate.

Anyway, honest photos - what the profession is all about - capturing life! (As opposed to taking it.)

5 upvotes
WACONimages
By WACONimages (8 months ago)

How is it possible that the biggest modern & leading(??) country in the world has so much religion fanaticism & racism. Conservatism and fear! is the only reason I can think of as an outsider(Netherlands). I know it is only in parts of the US and racism can be found all over the world. But it has still an impact on me. Same as anti-homo, Tea-Party, anti-abortion etc. This might be ideas from only a few % of the US citizens, but they seem to have quiet an influence on politics however.

If I see pics of friends who travel in the US I lucky see a lot of great stuff!, but the above sometimes holds me back to make such a journey myself.

11 upvotes
Petrogel
By Petrogel (8 months ago)

U.S.A is a big country the 10% represents 31 million people, meaning Netherlands, Greece and Belgium together (plus tourists).

9 upvotes
lancespring
By lancespring (8 months ago)

You think that 10% of Americans belong to such groups like this? You are crazy.

There are only 8,000 Ku Klux Klan members left in the USA today. That in a nation of 316 Million people. Your ignorance of the USA is quite extreme.

You come across as being most biased, to be saying such untrue things.

9 upvotes
lancespring
By lancespring (8 months ago)

It doesn't though. The USA is one of the least racist nations in the world. Especially when compared to a nation like the Netherlands.

"How is it possible that the biggest modern & leading(??) country in the world has so much religion fanaticism & racism"

6 upvotes
M Lammerse
By M Lammerse (8 months ago)

Well, of course the KKK and similar (reli)tard groups are the lowest of the low in the US.

But the last time when I was in Boston, and you see a bumper sticker with the text: "put a white guy in the white house" you think, it's the land of dreams, that's the only thing which holds it socially and culturally together, dreams (and that includes that 'G' thing they always refer to)

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
Petrogel
By Petrogel (8 months ago)

@lancespring
No i don't think "that 10% of Americans belong to such groups like this"
I don't know the "percentage " at all, i'm just trying to justify sizes of population groups

2 upvotes
Petrogel
By Petrogel (8 months ago)

Actually those pictures look like there are frames from a funny farm !!!

Comment edited 8 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Shamael
By Shamael (8 months ago)

There is no more enslaved than the one who claims to be free. Racism is the same, most of time, those who claim to be victims are more racist than those they accuse. Racism, intergrism, blasphemy, heresy, all those things are most of time excuses used for just anything. Those who use those words are generally those that hide behind them to be allowed to do things that wil bring others in jail right away. I do not give examples, but look around you, some break, rob people, steal, destroy, break, and if you say something, your are mister bad guy, you are a racist. So, let's stay with the feet on the ground. No reason to belong to such groups as KKK? maybe, maybe not, all is a question of point of view, it may concern you or not, you chose.

1 upvote
Cadron
By Cadron (8 months ago)

That's a big pile of crap, Shamael. Your point of view would have to be seriously messed up to join a hate group like the kkk. The US was founded as a nation of laws and as such people have a proper way to settle differences. People here don't get to take the law into their own hands base on their point of view.

0 upvotes
lancespring
By lancespring (8 months ago)

Petrogel: You are clearly engaging in exaggeration. The KKK is all but dead in the USA. People identifying themselves as Klan members only number in a few thousand in the USA. They are extremely rare. Yet you are comparing them to the populations of several nations? That is ridiculous. Shame on you!

"I don't know the "percentage " at all, i'm just trying to justify sizes of population groups"

0 upvotes
M DeNero
By M DeNero (8 months ago)

You don't think very much, apparently. The US is a large country, with a population comparable to all of Europe. It is also geographically, climatically, ethnically, religiously, culturally and socially diverse to the extreme. In addition the US allows more freedom than most countries. Mix those factors and you will end up with many different outlooks, including some wackos. The majority of Americans are normal, but normal doesn't usually make headlines.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Petrogel
By Petrogel (8 months ago)

@lancespring
I don't know how many kkk are left, if they are 8000 or even 8 i just don't care, I was not speaking to you when i did that comment not about the actual number of the kkk, it was for understanding the amount of numbers of population in European scale. I didn't want to offend you in any way !!!

@M DeNero
Apparently you are not in position to know if i think much or not as you are not in position to understand what i've commented !!

Comment edited 25 seconds after posting
1 upvote
magneto shot
By magneto shot (8 months ago)

if the room reflects the mind....

2 upvotes
ljmac
By ljmac (8 months ago)

I can't think of a better advertisement for gun control than the first photograph. I can't think of a better advertisement for birth control either.

21 upvotes
lancespring
By lancespring (8 months ago)

If you actually bother to read the story, you will discover that is only a BB gun, not a real firearm. The man is using it to kill a cockroach on the wall of his home.

6 upvotes
ClickBoom
By ClickBoom (8 months ago)

Yes and as we all know, BB guns are the recommended form of pest control. LOL

3 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (8 months ago)

I just love it when people think they are smarter than the Founding Fathers.

1 upvote
Stealthy Ninja
By Stealthy Ninja (8 months ago)

I gotta wonder why that guy has a Dora the Explorer play-set in his house. I'd have thought that was too ethnic for him and his kin.

4 upvotes
eddie_cam
By eddie_cam (8 months ago)

He wanted to try out something new but failed. ;-)

0 upvotes
happypoppeye
By happypoppeye (8 months ago)

Well, right now the KKK are all for Zimmerman...

0 upvotes
alfredo_tomato
By alfredo_tomato (8 months ago)

It was the door prize at a cross burning.

Comment edited 29 seconds after posting
1 upvote
eddie_cam
By eddie_cam (8 months ago)

Actions speak louder than words, but photos show the ugliness of racism and its proponents.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
zlosyn
By zlosyn (8 months ago)

is there even a line between WHITE POWER and WHITE TRASH ?

17 upvotes
Jean Marie
By Jean Marie (8 months ago)

Obviously, it could only be a power line ...

0 upvotes
Corkcampbell
By Corkcampbell (8 months ago)

These are some of the best and funniest replies I've ever seen to a thread or article. Keep it up! I cracked up when I read Stealthy Ninja's, but all are entertaining.

1 upvote
John by the Sea
By John by the Sea (8 months ago)

In the picture of the guy with a shotgun, I see Dora the Explorer in the background. I find that Ironic.

2 upvotes
monkeybrain
By monkeybrain (8 months ago)

Target practice?

2 upvotes
lancespring
By lancespring (8 months ago)

You think that is a shotgun? Man, you obviously know nothing about firearms. Anyone knowledgeable about guns can easily see that is just a BB/Pellet air rifle. Read the actual story, and you will see that is indeed the case. The guy is in the act of killing a cockroach on the wall of their home.

5 upvotes
Mike Walters
By Mike Walters (8 months ago)

I dont think it is a problem knowing nothing about firearms, in fact I would take it as a compliment!!!
I also thought it looked like a shotgun.

4 upvotes
babalu
By babalu (8 months ago)

It's a BB gun built to look like a shotgun, to attract buyers .

1 upvote
cmosse
By cmosse (8 months ago)

yeah thats the story: show a white "ugly" guy inhis homne with an air rifle to have a portrait of a "white racist killer" - just like the media wants them to be portrayed

2 upvotes
Mike Walters
By Mike Walters (8 months ago)

Well, if the guy is in the KKK, and he is white and he is trying to kill a cockroach....so no problem with calling him a 'white racist killer'..

0 upvotes
SRT3lkt
By SRT3lkt (8 months ago)

hope he'll not be using a drone in the near future

0 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (8 months ago)

Who do you think are recruited, really "best and brightest" as propaganda says? I have a bridge to sell you.
(Notice VET on one of the Klansmen's uniform)

0 upvotes
Mike Walters
By Mike Walters (8 months ago)

Well at least that means he is kind to animals :-)

0 upvotes
LKJ
By LKJ (8 months ago)

Fascinating

2 upvotes
M Lammerse
By M Lammerse (8 months ago)

That 'this' still exists...and I do not mean inbreed

3 upvotes
eddie_cam
By eddie_cam (8 months ago)

Is that you, Spock?

1 upvote
Stealthy Ninja
By Stealthy Ninja (8 months ago)

Fiancé and also brother.

26 upvotes
WhoozOn1st
By WhoozOn1st (8 months ago)

Love the shot of blackeyed Jack Sprat and his wife-to-be. Looks like the bridal duncecap is a perfect fit for the point on her chubby little head.

2 upvotes
justmeMN
By justmeMN (8 months ago)

Interesting Slate article. Being around people like that would creep me out.

3 upvotes
alfredo_tomato
By alfredo_tomato (8 months ago)

It brings back memories of my hometown. You nailed it.

1 upvote
ryan2007
By ryan2007 (8 months ago)

Bad form

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
Juck
By Juck (8 months ago)

Clearly you missed the whole point of the article.

13 upvotes
Matt1645f4
By Matt1645f4 (8 months ago)

i get the point but still bad choice of material

2 upvotes
InTheMist
By InTheMist (8 months ago)

Freedom of speech means that people can say (and believe) stupid stuff, and reporters can report on it.

3 upvotes
cmosse
By cmosse (8 months ago)

HaHa, only whites are portrayed as "being racists".
This is ridiculous and part of the liberal brainwash.

10 upvotes
ryan2007
By ryan2007 (8 months ago)

DPREVIEW has a worldwide audience, Photography is one thing, True or not true, it makes it seem DPREVIEW supports hate and racism by publishing this.

1 upvote
Barney Britton
By Barney Britton (8 months ago)

Nope. You've spectacularly missed the point.

6 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (8 months ago)

Seems Ryan understands the point quite well. That this story is about photojournalism in difficult conditions or of controversial subject matter is not a subtle one.

That doesn't mean it's not a poor choice of material. If you consider your audience and their feelings, you'll never go wrong in decisions on what to publish.

@InTheMist Hate Speech is against the law in the US, so no people absolutely cannot say ALL stupid stuff.

2 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (8 months ago)

Fear of the subject is the problem. There is no platform here that is promoting their way of thinking. Ignoring the existence of bad people won't make them go away, in fact the opposite is true. This isn't like some radical church whose only purpose is to insight people into violence in order to sue for damages. This is an old organization that people should at least be reminded about from time to time so they realize that the world they live in still has vestiges of old evil lingering. Hiding your head in the sand isn't going to do you any good, only education will. If there was an event that was being excessively covered and therefore motivating an organization to get more attention the same way, that's another matter. The people who have to deal with the KKK directly shouldn't be the only ones who care enough to fight back. Ignore the KKK and you abandon all those who need help countering their ignorance and hatred....and you counter it with more ignorance and hatred.

2 upvotes
mcshan
By mcshan (8 months ago)

The real racists are those who get involved for financial gain.

1 upvote
domina
By domina (8 months ago)

DPReview is has a worldwide audience, and this means you should respect the wishes of other people who want to see these photos here. I want to see these photos here and I like them a lot. I even produce my own similar photos with different social groups which I try and succeed to gain their trust for the purpose of photographing them.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 188