The Truth Behind The UC Berkeley Hanging Effigies - Underlying Symbolism

The Truth Behind The UC Berkeley Hanging Effigies – Underlying Symbolism

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Everyone was shocked to say the least when images were splattered across social media of hanging effigies at the main entrances of the UC Berkeley campus.

At first sight, it appears to be a racist act with the purpose of antagonizing protestors in support of #EricGarner . Well, it seems this demonstration was actually in support of the movement. This act was a way to symbolize modern day lynching. Each effigy had a name and a date on the bottom of it. It’s no coincidence that each effigy represented an African American who was lynched and didn’t receive justice.

The first one read: Laura Nelson 1911.

There are several conflicting stories about Laura Nelson. One thing all of the reports have in common is that Laura’s son L.D./Lawrence, who was 15-16 at the time, was shot dead after police showed up at their house after responding to a report of theft. Laura’s husband plead guilty to theft and Laura was lynched on May 25, 1911 after being accused of attempting to kill a cop after her son was shot at the scene.

Another one of the effigies represented Michael Donald, an African American man who was lynched by two Ku Klux Klan members after an unrelated African American man was accused of killing a white Police Officer.

It appears the protestors were looking for shock value. They wanted to make people uncomfortable, as the truth often does.

After knowing the meaning behind the protest, do you think it was too much? Or just enough?



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