Obama Parade Float Dubbed ‘Racist,’ Predictable Outrage Ensues
July 7, 2014 8:42am PST
A parade float in Nebraska that was considered “political satire” has people outraged at its supposed “racist” meaning.
The float appeared in the annual “Odd Fellows Lodge Fourth of July Parade” and was a pickup truck carrying a dummy in front of an outhouse that read “Obama Presidential Library.”
One of the local residents and her daughter said that they became fearful after seeing the float.
“It’s definitely a personal issue for me,” Glory Kathurima said. “This image and the words stamped across an outhouse were trying to equate the president, a black president with what you do in an outhouse. It’s disrespectful to a sitting president and incredibly racist.”
However parade emcee and lodge member Wally Sonnenschein denies any racism existed in the float.
“It was registered as political satire and people thought it was funny,” he said. He noted that the float had more support than any others from the audience and it won an honorable mention.
“The owner was practicing freedom of speech,” he added.
The Nebraska Democrat Party said they were disappointed in the town of Norfolk because of their “act of blatant disrespect to the president.”
NDP Executive Director Dan Marvin said “We have seen many times when Nebraskans disapprove of the president, but this clearly crosses the line.” He added that it was “the worst shows of racism for the office of the presidency that Nebraska has ever seen.”
“It’s beyond disappointing the city of Norfolk, its officials and citizens would allow such a thing,” he said.
The town’s mayor, Sue Fuchtman, explained that the city of Norfolk has nothing to do with organizing the parade, only that they allow Old Fellows Lodge to use their streets.
“They’ve been doing this for many years,” she said, adding that their only involvement is giving them approval.
“I don’t believe that there has ever been a question by the Odd Fellows as to who should be allowed to be in the parade,” Fuchtman said. “I believe this has become very controversial because of a lot of different opinions.”
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