Has this Halloween Display in Alexandria, Virginia Gone Too Far?


Halloween Display

UPDATE (8:36 PM – 11/07): Corrected the neighborhood where the display is/was located.

UPDATE (10:05 AM – 11/5/2015): Alexandria chapter of the NAACP received a response from the Alexandria Human Rights Office. Check it out at this link.

UPDATE (1:55 PM): Added comment from LaDonna Sanders, NAACP chapter president.

A Halloween display in the Seminary Hill neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia is getting quite a bit of attention.

This display, located on North Furman Street, features a corpse wrapped in black hanging from a tree surrounded by white ghosts.

This display isn’t getting rave reviews from the Alexandria chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

We received the above photo from LaDonna Sanders, president of the local chapter of the NAACP. It is my understanding that this photo has been forwarded to police chief and the Alexandria Human Rights office.

The NAACP had this to say about the display:

The NAACP believes the display is offensive and should be removed immediately. While the body is not hanging from the neck the imagery is reminiscent of a lynching.

Our President has alerted City Council of our concern regarding the display.

Ms. Sanders adds:

Despite receiving responses from City Council Members, no action has been taken by them, nor have we received follow up calls regarding any action from the police chief or human rights office.

A constituent of Alexandria shared a picture of her neighbors “Halloween Display”The NAACP believes the display is offensive and should be removed immediately. While the body is not hanging from the neck the imagery is reminiscent of a lynching. Our President has alerted City Council of our concern regarding the display.

Posted by Alexandria branch of the N.A.A.C.P. on Monday, November 2, 2015

I think this is terrible and SHOULD be taken down. So I ask you, my beloved readers, what are your thoughts on this display?

  • dan

    Did the NAACP address their concerns with the homeowner before escalating it to the police and city council? Their comment indicates ‘no’ and I would think that would be a pretty easy first step to take before getting the authorities involved.

  • Mac

    “Just because you’re offended doesn’t mean you’re right.”

    Everything is offensive nowadays. This article is offensive. Take it down.

  • Jim

    Would it have been better if the corpse were wrapped in white and the ghosts were black? Since the NAACP mentioned the color of the props, it may have made a difference. The odds the homeowner meant any disrespect are slim; however, now that the NAACP has brought this to light, they have thrown gas on a fire that wasn’t burning to begin with – another job of putting the cart before the horse. Well done NAACP, well done!

  • Jo Romero

    I think the writer of this is being too soft. That’s the problem with society now a days. Too many politically correct statements. Racism only strives off of acknowledgement. I never thought anything racist about the picture until I read the writers views. Grow up and stop feeding the fire that racism goes on!

  • Lynne

    My first thought in seeing this, especially given all the spiderwebs they also have on display, was that this is supposed to approximate the “upside down person hanging in a spider cocoon” which is actually a pretty common Halloween decoration. And, well, if you’ve found ghost decorations that aren’t white, I’ve never seen any. I understand that some people see it differently, but I don’t think that the immediate public shaming of the homeowners is the way to go about addressing it. The NAACP should have contacted them, engaged in a discussion about their concerns, and THEN, if the homeowners still refused to engage or remove it, fine – publicize it. If it were me, I would have been mortified to learn that people had been reading something into my decor that was absolutely not intended, and removed it promptly. To post photos of these folks’ home all over the internet and label them racists with evidence that is ambiguous, at best, is disgraceful.

  • ACyclistInThePortCity

    I do not know that it rises to something the govt should get involved in, but I can see where it would be offensive. This whole decorating for Halloween thing has gotten a little over the top, in my opinion.

  • Stan E.

    I’m disappointed with RedbrickTown for even posting this nonsense. This is 2015… someone can’t make a ghost display using white ghosts and a body in black and other scary props? Everything now is racist according to Ladonna Sanders.

    RedbrickTown should check her Facebook posts where her follower called for them to smash the windows of that house. If this could be actually racist in any way there would be support, but not this. She always loses credibility with her claims and articles.

  • Jay

    Just so everyone knows how bad it was, this from the Washington Post.

    Researchers said they determined that 3,959 black people were killed in “racial terror lynchings” in a dozen Southern states between 1877 and 1950.

    • Tim l


      No one is trying to ignore racism that occurred over 100 years ago. I think the majority of people are just tired of the hypersensitivity regarding racism. This display is not racist and I’m sure the owner wasn’t making a public racist lynching as their decorations. Racism does exist… between all races, but to always cry racism (like this) does nothing good for the cause to stop it.