The post thanked police and a group of people who prayed, then stated, “These thugs don’t just hate us…they hate our country! They hate patriotism, faith and freedom! But God still reigns over Branson, MO!”
Branson leaders are concerned about the negative attention in a town that thrives on tourism — Branson has just 11,500 full-time residents but draws millions of people each year to shows and attractions that are largely family-oriented. Most of the theaters only recently reopened after weeks of shutdown caused by the coronavirus.
“I don’t think there’s a Branson-area person that is happy with this situation and the way we’re being characterized across social media,” said Mayor Edd Akers, who on Tuesday issued a proclamation “promoting unity and condemning hate speech.”
The Kansas City Star reported that the Dixie Outfitters store is owned by Anna and Nathan Robb. Nathan Robb is the son of Thomas Robb, an Arkansas-based pastor who was once the leader of the Ku Klux Klan. In 2015, Anna Robb said she and her husband were estranged from Thomas Robb, but acknowledged attending KKK events in the past.
At a Branson Board of Aldermen meeting Tuesday, members were asked by a man in the crowd to voice their stance on the KKK, the Star reported. Two spoke out, two remained silent and Alderman Bob Simmons said the city should do something to support police because “there doesn’t seem to be too many people behind the police departments across the country.”