Opelika ministry rents, removes billboard with Hitler quote

acarlson@ledger-enquirer.comJune 2, 2014 

The Life Savers Ministries billboard outside Village Mall in Auburn, Ala. Submitted by reader Julie Burns.

SPECIAL TO THE LEDGER-ENQUIRER

A billboard at the Village Mall in Auburn, Ala., features five smiling kids beneath a quote from Adolf Hitler: "He alone, who owns the youth, gains the future."

According to Lamar Advertising's Montgomery office, the billboard was rented out by Life Savers Ministries, based in Opelika, Ala.

Hitler's quote traces back to his speeches of the '30s, and has historically been tied to the Nazi youth programs.

The billboard went up Friday and will be taken down Tuesday, per LSM's request.

"We are pulling the billboard and certainly never intended to cause confusion. ... Herbert Hoover would have been a far better one to quote when he said, 'Children are our most valuable resource,'" founder James Anderegg told the Ledger-Enquirer. "We are a children’s organization and had honorable intentions and nothing less."

LSM was founded in 1996 and now has "six school buses and a magnificent facility of its own where hundreds of boys and girls are brought from around 20 different rough and tough locations throughout Opelika and Auburn," according to the site's about page.

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