A Roy, Utah man thought it would be a nifty idea to display an animated lynching in front of his home for Halloween.
The NAACP described it as racially insensitive and said it should be taken down immediately, according to KMOV.
Despite the objections, Kevin Van Miltenberg said he will not take down the seven-foot display of a man hanging from a tree because he’s not breaking any laws. He said it won’t be removed until the day after Halloween.
The NAACP issued a statement saying the display makes a mockery of the history of lynchings in the United States.
The hands are bound behind the dummy’s back and the figure has a hood over its head.
Van Miltenberg, who has been building animatronic Halloween displays for the past six years, said he made the motorized display for people to enjoy and said he’s not trying to be offensive.
“When I was making it in the first place, it never crossed my mind at all, ‘Hey, one day someone might take offense to it,” he said. “Because I don’t make these to be offensive at all. I just make them for fun and for people to enjoy.”
Watch courtesy of KMOV:
The figure can be seen dangling from the noose while the body spins and jerks about.
Roy police determined that “this is not a government issue.”
3,959 people were victims of lynching in a dozen Southern states. For example, in 1940, Jesse Thornton was lynched in Alabama for not saying “Mister” as he talked to a white police officer.
The list goes on and on and on.
But we wouldn’t want to ruin Mr. Miltenberg’s Halloween with a history lesson on lynchings in America, now would we?
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