No place for hanging effigies in community

Families and friends of those who committed suicide say mascot shouldn't be portrayed as hanging man

I am writing to you to express my extreme disappointment with the Observer regarding last week’s publication of the picture submitted by the ACE school of their “mascot” (hanging effigy). The insensitivity shown to anyone at any time affected by the loss of someone to hanging is inexcusable. There is nothing news or noteworthy in the picture; it is strictly gratuitous. While I understand that there was no intent to be offensive the fact is that it was. I suspect there were things in ACE’s haunted house more worthy of a picture than a mock hanging body.

Speaking on behalf of family, friends, and family of friends who have left this world by hanging I say that you dishonour them and make a mockery of their method of leaving us and ask “How dare you?”

My other concern is that the effigy of a hanging body is used as a mascot in our school.  What positive or encouraging lessons are to be learning from this? Considering this community has lost a number of graduates of our high school to hanging over the past twenty years I am appalled that this decision was condoned at any level. What part of that hanging oscenity is positive or funny?

Andrea McRae

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