The president of the League of the South wants its “Secede” billboard restored alongside Interstate 85 in Alabama.
The billboard went up Friday in Montgomery, not far from a highway sign advertising the First White House of the Confederacy, but Lamar Advertising removed the message after it received complaints from motorists and advertisers threatened to stop doing business with the company.
Michael Hill, who co-founded League of the South in 1994, said the group ran the same billboard earlier this year near the state capital in Tallahassee, Florida, but he said the sign remained up for the duration of the two-month contract.
“We had a really, really good open public debate about this issue in Tallahassee,” Hill said. “Nobody got their pants in a wad about it.”
League of the South, which has been designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, calls for southern states to secede and set up a Christian theocracy ruled by “Anglo-Celtic” elites.
“The message is not offensive, it’s not immoral or unethical,” said Hill, who concedes the message is controversial.
Group members earlier this month protested the SPLC’s lawsuit seeking to overturn Alabama’s ban on same-sex marriage, and Hill issued a press release at the time mocking the civil rights group’s officials as overweight, Jewish homosexuals.
Hill said his group is exploring other options, even as members contact the advertising company to ask it to reconsider.
“Is this America, or is it Stalin’s Russia, where you shut down any opposition and dissent?” he said.
Watch a video about the billboard posted online by John Preston: