This election year has to be one of the craziest and most ridiculous races in recent memory. In the latest bout of GOP ridiculousness, a Tennessee Congressional candidate caused a major uproar when he displayed a racist campaign sign.
According to various reports, independent candidate Rick Tyler, who is currently in the race for the 3rd congressional seat in his district, placed a sign off of Highway 411 near Benton, Tennessee that read “Make America White Again.”
As if the sign wasn’t enough to drive his point home, Tyler was interviewed by local outlets and offered to explain just why he thought the sign was a good idea to increase visibility to his campaign. He was quoted as saying, “I have no hatred in [my] heart for people of color. America should go back to a 1960s, Ozzie and Harriet, Leave it to Beaver time when there were no break-ins; no violent crime; no mass immigration.”
When pressed about how the sign would be received by others and those who do not share his beliefs, Tyler continued, stating “I respect their right to have an opinion. I believe the majority of the people in the county like it. I saw people taking pictures beside it right after I posted it.” He also said that he is not concerned about any backlash that the sign may cause despite the fact that he has received death threats.
Luckily, the sign was taken down a mere 12 hours after it was put up, but it wasn’t Tyler who had a change of heart and decided to remove the sign. Instead it was the billboard company that removed it much to Tyler’s displeasure. He wants the sign put back up because he believes that since he paid for the sign to remain up until after the November election, it should do just that.
Congressman Chuck Fleischman, who Tyler hopes to succeed, released a statement regarding the billboard. He said, “I totally and unequivocally condemn the billboard and Mr. Tyler’s message and will vigorously fight any form of racism in the 3rd district of Tennessee or anywhere else in the nation.”