Mayor Campbell responds to hate sticker found on Monic Behnken’s campaign sign


The campaign sign of an ISU faculty member and Ames school board candidate, Monic Behnken, was defaced with a sticker similar to white heritage posters found in the Fall of 2016. 

K. Rambo

In response to a white supremacist sticker being used to deface school board candidate Monic Behnken’s campaign sign, Ames Mayor Ann Campbell released a statement condemning hate groups and calling for unity in Ames on Tuesday.

The sticker, discovered Sunday, directed people to a white supremacist website known as “The Right Stuff (TRS).”

The website is currently hosting a neo-Nazi forum that was used as an organizing platform for the white supremacist rallies in Charlottesville, Virginia where a white supremacist drove a car into a crowd of counter protestors on Aug. 11 that left Heather Heyer dead and 20 others injured.

The forum has lost several hosts since the the events in Charlottesville and found a home with TRS. The forum that TRS is hosting was also frequented by Dylan Roof, who carried out a terrorist attack on Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina on June 17, 2015.

The sticker used several anti-Semitic hate symbols including “echoes,” used to indicate someone or something is Jewish, and a stylized swastika used by the website.

The statement from Mayor Ann Campbell is as follows:

Today we were appalled to learn that evidence of white nationalism had raised its ugly and hurtful head here in Ames. This past weekend a yard sign for an Ames School Board candidate was defaced with words and symbols accosting others’ race and religion. This is not who we are as a community. I call on every resident of Ames to remind ourselves that we welcome people of all ethnicities, religious faiths, and diverse backgrounds.

A wave of horror rolled around the country – and the world – after the recent events in Charlottesville. This was followed by the tepid reaction and blame sharing voiced by national leadership at the highest level. We spoke then of the need for all in the ISU community and the entire Ames community to condemn the hateful action and those who participate in hate groups. Unfortunately last weekend’s yard sign defacing told us that this message was not universally heard or respected. Thus, I repeat this call for us all to join forces in making Ames the welcoming community for all.

For me our direction should be best summed up by a modest phrase coined by a child in Chicago earlier this year. It came when the subject was immigration limitation. The term went viral on social media and with thousands of yard signs. I think it is equally applicable today for those of us in Ames. That sign simply read, and ours should read, “Hate has no home here.”

Ann H. Campbell