In Craigsville, Virginia, a mother of a 7-year-old willingly made him a Ku Klux Klan robe and hood for his Halloween costume this year because he thought it would be, “cool”. She said that she warned him that some people might not approve of his attire (Golgowski 1). The 7-year-old’s mother, Jessica Black (ironic?), said that not only did he understand the risk of wearing the costume, but that it was also a family tradition. His older brother also wore a KKK cloak and hood as a Halloween Costume in previous years.
“She also defended the KKK's 'stance' that, 'It's supposed to be white with white, black with black, man with woman,' and praised the group for raising money for a St. Jude Hospitals [sic]” (Golgowski 1). I seriously doubt that St. Jude Hospitals would prefer to be connected to either the KKK or this particular woman’s point of view. And most Americans would also disagree with her racist rhetoric that she is spouting which is influencing her 7-year-old son.
As Black predicted, her son’s costume has created an uproar of letters, emails and other correspondence regarding concern for the message that it sends not only to young trick-or-treaters, but to every person with whom he came into contact while in his costume (Golgowski 1).
The child’s main reason for wearing the KKK garb was because, “It was cool” (Golgowski 1). The child also stated that he first saw the outfit in 1991’s, “Fried Green Tomatoes”, a movie that was released approximately fifteen years before the boy was born. Of course, much of the film is set between WWI and WWII, a time when racial equality was not at its premium.
And ironically, despite Ms. Black’s list as to the values for which the KKK stands, “Fried Green Tomatoes” was awarded a GLAAD Media Award for "best lesbian content", and that was for the ‘ambiguous relationship’ between Idgie and Ruth in the film. The novel gives more detail into the relationship between these two women (“Fried Green Tomatoes”, Wickipedia 1). Ms. Black, I challenge you to read the book, and hey, if your 7-year-old is mature enough to wear the garb of the KKK, he surely must be mature enough to read this novel. Let him read it, too! Go get your library cards…
“Fried Green Tomatoes.” Wickipedia Page. November 3, 2013.
Golgowski, Nina. “Virginia Boy's Klu Klux Klan Halloween Costume Draws Threats.” New York Daily News. November 3, 2013.