ROY, Utah - Kade Rogers says he’s received death threats over his Halloween decorations.
“I was not meaning to offend anyone, and, if I did: I’m sorry,” Rogers said.
Rogers believes the whole thing is just one big misunderstanding. The root of the problem, he believes, is that not many people have seen the movie “The Purge,” and thus don’t understand his decoration.
“I love that movie,” he said. “It’s my favorite horror film.”
In large red letters on Rogers’ garage reads the words, “Keep America Great. Purge and Purify.” However, it originally read, “Make America Great Again. Purge and Purify.”
“[We were] mortified,” said Nathan Peterson, who lives across the street. “We thought it was racial.”
Peterson has five kids and points out that the house sits less than a block away from an elementary school. He said he even went over to Rogers’ house to ask him about the decoration but no one was home at the time.
Peterson wasn’t the only one concerned. Hundreds of Facebook comments poured in within hours and Rogers said he received death threats and that someone keyed his car.
The Roy City Manager added that his phones have been ringing with concerned citizens upset with the message.
“This one says, ‘Keep America Great. Purge and Purify,’” Rogers said of his new sign. “I took the other one down and put this one up to directly quote from the movie.”
There is a slight difference in the movie poster theme and Rogers’ original message. Keep America Great verse Make America Great Again.
“I didn’t mean for it to be political,” Rogers said. “This is just a Halloween decoration. That’s all this is.”
Since changing the sign, Nathan Peterson says he feels more comfortable with it, especially because he wasn’t aware of the movie before.
“Now that we know it’s a Halloween prop, it’s not that big of a deal,” Peterson said. “I kind of feel bad for making it a big deal, but still, he chose the wrong wording at first.”