Racially offensive Halloween display removed
HOUSTON (KTRK) -- A racially offensive Halloween decoration was put up in one southeast Houston neighborhood, close to a church and school. It was upsetting some people, but after we started asking questions it was taken down.
Oliver was just driving through his old neighborhood when a so-called Halloween lawn decoration caught his eye, and caused him to shake his head.
He said, "If it is a Halloween decoration, I mean, there's a bunch of other ways to do it than having a black character portrayed as a slave master to a white individual picking cotton."
The lawn decoration was put up a few days ago by a man and his brother in front of their own house. Neither wanted to talk on camera, but told Eyewitness News off camera they moved the decoration to a nearby abandoned home after Houston police officers began frequenting the area and taking photos of their set up.
Houston Police Officers Union President Gary Blankenship said, "If you ask my opinion, I think the thing's in bad taste. I certainly don't think it promotes peace and harmony in the neighborhood."
The Houston Police Officers Union says it doesn't like the display but there is nothing illegal about it. And even though the overwhelming majority of people we talked to found it offensive, there was at least one exception.
"Freedom of speech and everything, I think it's pretty nice," said neighbor Allen Samuel. "I think it should bring out the Halloween spirit."
The lawn ornament was removed Wednesday afternoon, much to the relief of Houston City Council Member Wanda Adams, who represents the area. She says the neighborhood is trying to rebuild and bring people together, not tear them apart.
"This is something that if it was reversed we would take it very offensive and very discriminatory to our race," Adams said. "I don't think this is something that should be displayed in any particular type of community."
The family who originally put the display up insists it was meant as a joke for Halloween, but plenty of people aren't laughing about it.
local, miya shay
- Missing 14-year-old girl found safe in South Texas 46 min ago
- Video from N. Houston pawn shop robbery released 47 min ago
- Armed robbers pistol whip McDonald's manager
- Burglary suspect watches sleeping toddler
- Plaza sale sparks parking problem for nearby church
- Lottery dates for 2015 Houston marathon announced
- Last week's Houston restaurant violations 44 min ago
- Jumbo jet to move through streets of Clear Lake
- Suspect: 'My girl is about to rob the store'
- Marriage fraud conspiracy lands 4 in prison
- Man held up on his way home from bank 51 min ago
- Reward to nab Most Wanted sex offender climbs to $13K
- Make-A-Wish lets boy fly like Iron Man 8 min ago
- 'No hooking' billboard curbs prostitution in neighborhood 48 min ago
Most Viewed StoriesMost Viewed Photos