The Dangling President
Let’s order things clearly: It was objectionable for a Central Falls high school teacher to dangle an Obama doll upside down with a sign saying “Fire CF Teachers,” because it involved the students in a union dispute. Talk of its being a hate crime is utterly outlandish:
To Clifford Montiero, president of the Providence branch of the NAACP, the effigy represents a lynching of a black man, and brings back painful memories of decades of injustices.
“In my mind, this is a hate crime, and the teacher should be charged,” Montiero said. “This teacher feels he can demean the president of the United States, an African-American who has overcome all this hatred. It is wrong. And when you take a nonviolent environment like a classroom, and introduce violence and hatred into it, you have crossed the line.”
Even calling the thing an “effigy,” as the Providence Journal does, goes a bit far. I look at the picture and I think Laugh In, not Mississippi Burning, with the President popping out to offer a one liner.