Protesters in Manitowoc respond to offensive picture

The picture, now taken off social media, was of local business owners posing with a rope.
Peaceful protest held at The Wharf in Manitowoc after a controversial photo posted on social media was widely shared.
Published: Jul. 1, 2020 at 10:42 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) -A protest was held in Manitowoc on Wednesday after people said local business owners posted an offensive picture on social media.

The picture, now taken off social media, was of local business owners posing with a rope.

The Wharf in Manitowoc is normally a place for drinks and fun, but Wednesday evening it was place for protesters to have a community talk.

“I think it is up to him to explain to the community what his involvement was in that picture whether he was aware or unaware,” Laskeshore’s United Visionaries Member Aaron Bailey said.

This happened days after the FBI reported Bubba Wallace, a NASCAR driver, found a rope in his garage that resembled a noose.

“This has effected not just one race,” The Wharf Bar Owner Brennan Seehafer said. “This has effected a community of individuals together here today and I was able to see that.”

Brennan apologized to the crowd and said he didn’t know what was in the picture until he saw it.

It’s very unfortunate,” Seehafer said. “I am not a racist, but I don’t want you to take my words for that. Today I want to be able to prove it to you.”

He was the only business owner in the picture to attend the protest.

Brennan said he’s moving forward by putting a mural outside his bar and getting involved with the community to spread awareness on racial injustice.

“It’s not going to happen overnight, but we have to sit down and get a plan,” said Seehafer. “I am on board 100%. Not just this week, not just next week but months from now as well.”

Protesters said having Brennan there to talk to protesters was important.

“It shows that he’s ready to accept and acknowledge what that picture represents and learn from it,” said Bailey.

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