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Is the man defending a life-size statue of a watermelon-holding Obama racist?

Dec. 27, 2012 at 6:52 PM  |  Updated Dec. 27, 2012 at 7:12 PM   |   Comments

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Dec. 27 (UPI) -- Danny Hafley of Kentucky's Casey County wasn't trying to be racist when he built a life-size statue of President Barack Obama eating a watermelon and put it up near his neighborhood's road for everyone to see, or at least that's what he told Lex 18 News when they confronted him about it.

"The way I look at it, it's freedom of speech," Hafley told Lex 18 News, "I don't know how other people will take it."

Unfortunately, one of Hafley's neighbors has taken the whole thing as him being racist.

"If he wants to place it someplace else that would be fine," the anonymous neighbor told the news channel. "We don't have black people in this community but I'm sure they travel this road like everybody else does. They could be offended. I don't agree with it."

But Hafley is not worried. Even though he originally put up the mannequin for the election, he's gotten so much attention from it that he's planning on leaving it out as long as he can.

"That's my buddy. He don't talk. Don't make no smart comments," he said. "If I had a dollar for everyone who stopped and took a picture of it I'd be a millionaire."

As for why the statue is holding a watermelon, Hafley said he thought the doll "might get hungry standing out here," but another neighbor said the piece of fruit appeared as soon as the president won the election and that it substituted a sign that read, "In another four years, this will destroy us."

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