Howell civic leaders have responded to the discovery of white supremacist flyers that were found after a cultural event in Downtown Howell over the weekend.

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The flyers were placed on the windshields of vehicles that were parked downtown for a fundraising event for the Sikyha Foundation, whose mission is to help girls in Northwest India. The group behind the flyers, Patriot Front, is a nationally recognized white supremacy organization which promotes a race purity theory. The national group, which is based in Texas, is responsible for similar activities in Flint and Ann Arbor, as well as across the country over the last several months.

A Joint Statement by the City of Howell, Howell Downtown Authority and Howell Area Chamber of Commerce said that Howell area citizens and organizations such as the Livingston Diversity Council have worked hard to educate on the value of diversity to a community’s success. Howell Mayor Nick Proctor said racist attitudes espoused by the group behind the flyers aren’t welcome in the community. “Once again, Howell was subjected to intolerant and hateful rhetoric by a group not associated with our community. Although we support the right of free speech we find this type of expression reprehensible. We categorically reject intolerance of any type and those who peddle in it are not welcome in our town.” Pat Convery, president of the Howell Area Chamber of Commerce, concurred, saying “Hate, such as that expressed by Patriot Front, has no home here. The chamber and this community have worked together for years to create a welcoming and inclusive atmosphere for all who want to live, work or visit. These fliers that are not from our community are reprehensible but also remind us that there is still work to do in this country.”

Howell Downtown Development Director, Cathleen Edgerly joined in by saying “This is not who we are as a community. To have such an incident happen in our downtown, especially where people were gathering for such a worthy cause is extremely troubling. We, as a City, will continue to be vigilant and work together to prevent these types of actions from happening in the future.” (JK)