This morning, the hackitivist group Anonymous “unhooded” several prominent U.S. Senators and mayors who it claims are members of the Ku Klux Klan. One of the alleged “White Knights” is none other than the openly gay Democratic mayor of Lexington, KY, Jim Gray.
62-year-old Grey came out publicly in 2005 while running for vice mayor of Lexington. In 2010, he became the city’s first openly gay mayor. And in 2014, he was re-elected for a second term.
This morning, Gray took to Twitter to deny any involvement with the KKK:
This allegation from the group Anonymous is false, insulting and ridiculous. I have never had any relationship of any kind with the KKK.
— Mayor Jim Gray (@JimGrayLexKY) November 2, 2015
He followed that up with a second tweet a few minutes later:
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I am opposed to everything the KKK stands for. I have no idea where this information came from, but wherever it came from, it is wrong. — Mayor Jim Gray (@JimGrayLexKY) November 2, 2015
He also posted the following statement to his official Facebook page:
Brenna Angel, a spokeswoman for Gray’s office, told the Lexington Herald-Leader they are “at a total loss” as to how the mayor’s name ended up on the list.
Supporters of Gray were quick to come to his defense.
“I’ve known Mayor Gray and his family all of my life,” Rita Riherd wrote on Facebook. “This is absolutely the most ridiculous accusation.”
“Such an allegation could not be further from the truth,” Joe Terry added. “Jim Gray stand [sic] for all those things that the KKK traditionaly [sic] opposes.”
“I have known Jim since I have been in Lexington, worked with him on numerous occasions, and consider him a good friend,” Jim Alexander said. “I have seen his tireless work for equality for all of Lexington’s citizens no matter of color orientation or background or ethnicity.”
Other lawmakers outed by Anonymous for allegedly being involved with the KKK include U.S. Senators Thom Tillis of North Carolina, John Cornyn of Texas, Dan Coats of Indiana, and Johnny Isakson of Georgia, as well as mayors Madeline Rogero of Knoxville, TN; Paul D. Fraim of Norfolk, VA; Kent Guinn of Ocala, FL; and Tom Henry of Fort Wayne, IN.