Charleston Shootings New South

In this Saturday, Feb. 19, 1983 file photo, anti-Klan demonstrators, right, heckle dozens of members of the Ku Klux Klan at the Texas Capitol in Austin following a short parade nearby. Four hours later, several anti-Klan groups staged a parade of their own. Across the South, Confederate symbols are toppling, teetering or at least getting critical new looks. But is it a sign of real change in a region known for defending its complex traditions, or simply the work of frightened politicians and nervous corporate bean counters scrambling for cover in the wake of another white-on-black atrocity? (AP Photo/Ted Powers)

The Ku Klux Klan is rallying its troops to protest plans to remove the Confederate flag from the South Carolina statehouse grounds.

The Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, which is based in Pelham, N.C., plans to demonstrate before the South Carolina capitol July 18, according to a report by USA Today.

“We will be at the statehouse in Columbia, S.C., standing up for our Confederate history and all the southerners who fought and died against federal tyranny,” an automated message on the Loyal White Knights’ answering machine said, according to the newspaper.

A spokesman for the S.C. Budget and Control Board confirmed plans of the rally, which will occur on July 18 from 3-5 p.m. EST, according to USA Today.

“They are trying to wipe us out of the history books,” the White separatist group claims in a post on its website. “People seem to forget that Black people and even the Cherokee nations fought for the South. Tell this cultural Marxist government they better not dare to dishonor our ancestors graves.”

Controversy surrounding the long divisive Confederate symbol erupted after the murder of nine African-American worshippers at an AME church in Charleston, S.C., by a White man who claimed he wanted to start a race war.

On June 27, Bree Newsome, 30, of Charlotte, N.C., was arrested after she removed the Confederate banner currently erected on a 30-feet flagpole before the South Carolina statehouse.

Just a week before, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley called for the flag to be totally removed from the state property in the wake of the church massacre.

“For many people in our state, the flag stands for traditions that are noble, traditions of history, of heritage and of ancestry…. At the same time, for many others in South Carolina, the flag is a deeply offensive symbol of a brutally oppressive past,” Haley said at the press conference while surrounded by lawmakers and officials of different parties and races.

“We are here in a moment of unity in our state, without ill will, to say it is time to move the flag from the capitol grounds. 150 years after the Civil War, the time has come,” she added. “My hope is that in removing a symbol that divides us, we can move forward as a state in harmony, and we can honor the nine blessed souls who are now in heaven.”