‘Karen-themed’ Halloween scarecrow display removed after Karens make complaints

A "Karen-themed" Halloween scarecrow display, featuring a figure with a "can I speak to the manager?" T-shirt, was removed after Karens complained.

The scarecrow-cum-Karen was erected in the City of Prosser, Washington, in the US, as part of the Historic Downtown Prosser’s annual decorating contest.

However, the scary figure in a straw hat was hauled down and city officials apologised, saying the entry wasn't in the spirit of the competition, The Mirror reports.

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'Karen' is an internet meme that became a derogatory way of referring to women who are prone to complain for things otherwise considered unimportant.

But one group thinks it was even more personal than poking fun at an internet meme.

Campaigning group Friends of Downtown Prosser claims the display took aim at one of their leaders, reports the Tri-City Herald.

In an email to the paper, a representative for the group claimed it was about ongoing resistance from the group to an upcoming $16.8m (£15m) deal to replace Prosser City Hall and Police Station.

They said the display's black wig was matched to the representative's hair colour.

She said: “This past weekend, City Hall entered an annual Halloween decorating contest with a ghoulish scarecrow dressed up to look like me. Several people who understood the context behind the display immediately complained to the city.

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“Prosser City Hall engaged in targeted, public harassment of a private Prosser citizen on public grounds.

"They created a grotesque effigy to publicly humiliate a city resident as retaliation for opposing a city bond proposal on the upcoming ballot.”

The city has denied the display was directed at anyone.

City Manager Thomas Glover said: “It’s just unfortunate that some people decided it was targeted toward a resident. I think it got out of hand.”

And, confirming the figure would be taken down, an apology was handed out.

"The City of Prosser removed the Halloween display at City Hall and has withdrawn its entry into the Historic Downtown Prosser decorating contest," a spokesperson for the city said.

"City officials acknowledge the display was inconsistent with the spirit of the competition."

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