‘Lynching symbol’ sparks complaints in Madison

hanging man halloween decoration
** picture from The Daily Record
(It’s a little odd that the Virgin Mary is sitting underneath this black hanging figure with a pitchfork wielding skeleton to her left.)

The what ifs – “What if it was white, what if it was small statured” mean nothing. The fact is it’s a black figure with a noose around its neck and nooses have been front page news lately as black are hatefully targeted around the country. What is wrong with these people? Why is there a hanging figure on this man’s lawn anyway? Why not have an dummy that’s been riddled with bullets or a dummy with multiple stab wounds. Though Halloween decorations are meant to be creepy and to scary, there’s definitely a line you can cross.

‘Lynching symbol’ sparks complaints in Madison
Tuesday, October 16, 2007

MADISON — Public uproar that compared an image to a lynching has led a Madison family to remove a hanged dummy from its Halloween display.

Homeowners David and Cheryl Maines angrily denied the display, including a life-size figure with a featureless black head hanging from a noose, was racist. They had refused to remove the figure dressed in a navy blue shirt, blue jeans and sneakers earlier Monday.

“It’s a Halloween decoration, that’s all it is,” said David Maines, who is Madison’s superintendent of public works. “I’m at the end of my rope because of one lady … a lady who is being a pain in the neck.”


6 thoughts on “‘Lynching symbol’ sparks complaints in Madison

  1. Why didn’t they just hang the skeleton that is next to the hanging man? I think if I were Black, I would be offended too. Why didn’t they just listen to their neighbors. After all, one’s front yard is seen by others. I think this is very insensitive and passive aggressive. Why do most people sleepwalk through their lives without caring about the next person?

  2. Why not hang a white sheet with a pointed hood with KKK written on the chest, and hang that in response to the neighbor’s complaint. That would have made a statement everyone would have enjoyed.

  3. The effigy looks like a hanged man with a hood pulled over his head, which is routine procedure in executions. Since most ‘trick or treaters’ are little kids, I think it’s too gruesome, but not racist. Halloween Magazine post instructions for hanging effigies and tying hangman nooses on it website at http://www.halloweenmagazine.com.

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