A terrible looking event took place at a public playground in Philadelphia as someone took a child’s doll representing an African-American baby, and hung it from a noose in a tree. Making matters even worse, the park was the site of the graveyard for the Mother Bethel AME Church, one of the earliest serving the black community in the region.
Many were shocked by this event, and a local outlet described it as being “a powerful and painful symbol of violent racism.”
Sickened by what took place today at Weccacoe Playground. This despicable act shows how far this country has fallen when people are inspired by hateful rhetoric. We’ll do everything we can to bring those responsible to justice: https://t.co/eHw87cgxBc
— Jim Kenney (@PhillyMayor) August 2, 2018
This is what the website stated:
“I am sickened by what took place today at Weccacoe Playground. Although the investigation is still underway, I want to immediately condemn this despicable act. It demonstrates how far this country has fallen when people are inspired by the hateful rhetoric of our President. And it is particularly disgraceful to make a sacrilege out of a sacred burial ground, where thousands of African Americans are interred. The City will do everything in its power to bring the people responsible to justice for this disgusting act.”
Eventually, the culprits were found, and they were not exactly who everyone was expecting. The local CBS outlet tracked down an eyewitness, and soon had a group of young boys in hand, both black and white, who thought they were playing a prank to “creep people out.”
“A group of children claimed Thursday evening that they hung a black baby doll from a noose at a Philadelphia playground to “creep people out” — an action that prompted a police investigation and swift condemnation from spiritual and city leaders…
“Shortly after 6 p.m., a group of boys — all under the age of 13 and of mixed races — walked up to NBC10 reporter Rosemary Connors and photojournalist John Panfile and claimed they hung the doll.
“Tyler, the pastor, took the boys aside and let them explain why they decided to hang the doll. According to Tyler, the boys claimed they found the doll on the roof of a structure in the park and found it ‘creepy.'”
Mystery solved, and it wasn’t a group of neo-nazis after all. The fact that these children would find such a “prank” acceptable at that age and not have a clue about the symbolism is surprising, but that speaks to their parenting.