Federal prosecutor booed at forum on tolerance

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

MANCHESTER, Tenn. — The U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee tried to explain tolerance to an audience in Manchester. Most wanted none of it.

William C. Killian’s speech was constantly interrupted by boos and heckling Tuesday evening at the Manchester-Coffee County Conference Center.

The meeting was billed as “Public Disclosure in a Diverse Society” and was sponsored by the American Muslim Advisory Council of Tennessee.

The Chattanooga Times Free Press reported shouts of “traitor,” ”serpent,” and “go home” were directed at Killian by a crowd of about 300 people. Others, who had staged a protest outside before the meeting, were angered at being turned away when the room reached capacity.

Killian told the crowd hateful speech is allowed by law, but threats are not.