Halloween is just days away and one McDonald’s in Massachusetts decided to get in on the fun by decorating the front of their restaurant. However, the Halloween display they set up ended up offending customers and causing the franchise owner of the burger joint to have to apologize. While many are scratching their heads, wondering why the restaurant would have ever thought this choice of decor would be acceptable in the first place, others think those offended are just being overly sensitive, according to The New York Post.
At first glace, the Halloween decorations appeared friendly enough. They were stick-on decals that were applied to the front of the counter, complete with a gnarled tree, pumpkins, bats, and other scary icons. However, when looking closely, a limp, hanging body was seen dangling from the tree. It was this that caused customer Erik Pocock to post a photo of the display on social media. He called out McDonald’s, asking them to explain themselves.
The post quickly gained traction online, with many pointing out that this could be interpreted as a lynching, which is associated with a dark, racially unjust, and painful history. Before long, franchise owner Chuck Lietz issued a public apology.
“We deeply regret that these decorations were on display, and as soon as we identified the inappropriate content, we immediately removed the decorations display. We apologize for any unintended offense they may have had on our community.”
The decorations were also removed from the store. The reactions regarding the decor were widely mixed. Some people thought it was too graphic and upsetting, while others didn’t think it needed to be removed.
— McDonald's (@McDonalds) October 31, 2017
“It’s pretty graphic. I think people might be sensitive to the topic,” one customer said.
This isn’t the first time that Halloween decorations have ended up making the rounds on social media due to interpreted racial insensitivity. As The Inquisitr previously reported, an Illinois family’s Halloween display that depicted another lynching caused a stir in 2018. In this case, a black, male figure was seen hanging from a tree in this family’s yard, upsetting many of the neighbors who found it greatly disturbing and racist.
The homeowners insisted that they didn’t intend for their decorations to be offensive or racist and just associated hanging with classic Halloween horror. Nevertheless, they did ultimately agree to take down the decorations.
“It’s a shocking feeling to see something like that. It represents a feeling. It represents a belief. It represents a harsh time in history that affected everybody,” Toya Griffin, a neighbor said.