Racist group mails out new flier

Spokane Spokesman Review/November 19, 2000
By Susan Drumheller

Mailings are first since trial against Aryan Nations, Butler Sandpoint. A racist flier mocking the state's latest human rights campaign and attacking local human rights leaders arrived in mailboxes around North Idaho on Saturday.

The mailing was the first since the trial against the Aryan Nations, which resulted in the foreclosure of Aryan Nations leader Richard Butler's compound in Hayden Lake.

Vincent Bertollini of the 11th Hour Remnant Messenger sent the mailings to homes throughout Bonner and Kootenai counties. Bertollini has distributed other racist material through the mail in recent years.

The fliers are printed in red, white and blue. They show a map of Idaho and locate several of Idaho's human rights organizations. The slogan of the flier is "Idaho, the Hue Man Rights Jew Controlled Marxist Communist State," an apparent spoof of the new slogan promoted by the Kootenai County Human Rights Task Force. The task force slogan, which it hopes will be adopted as the official state motto, is "Idaho, the Human Rights State." That slogan was displayed on more than 100 reader boards by businesses in and around Coeur d'Alene during the Oct. 28 Aryan Nations parade.

Bertollini's latest flier names leaders of North Idaho's human rights groups and asks: "Why do we need so many JEWS to look after us whites?"

Marshall Mend, a board member of the Kootenai County Task Force, said he received many calls Saturday after friends and acquaintances found the fliers in their mailboxes.

"I'm not happy about being a target. My family's not happy about being a target," the prominent Coeur d'Alene real estate agent said. "I've gotten calls from people saying this shouldn't be allowed, this should be against the law."

Mend, who is Jewish, said other Jews in the community called him, saying they felt they were being targeted as well. Gary Payton, the director of the Bonner County Human Rights Task Force, also was named on the flier. Neither he nor most of the human rights activists in North Idaho are Jewish. "The reason I don't feel threatened by it is, the portrayal is so cartoonish and so far from the truth," he said. "The vast majority of people who receive these things, as soon as they see who it's from, throw them in the wastebasket right away."

Bertollini shares Butler's Christian Identity beliefs and has produced a video of Butler that he also distributed by bulk mail. Bertollini recently purchased a home in Hayden for Butler after a Kootenai County jury awarded $6.3 million to plaintiffs Victoria and Jason Keenan, bankrupting Butler. Butler also lost the rights to the name Aryan Nations. Now he's preaching his racist views under another organizational name, the Aryan National Alliance. Mend received a mailing from the Aryan National Alliance postmarked Nov. 6. That mailing lectured him for displaying his support for "Hue-man rights."

"I'm not sure if he did a big mailing or if it was addressed to me," Mend said. Last spring, Bertollini sent a mailing that attacked individual human rights leaders in North Idaho. The Sandpoint community responded with two full-page newspaper advertisements, signed by more than 1,200 individuals declaring their support for human rights and refusing to be silent.

Mend said Kootenai County supporters wanted to sign it but feared their signatures would disqualify them from sitting on the jury in the Aryan Nations trial if they'd been called to serve. "Now we can take a stand," he said.

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