“statue required a more thorough assessment of the implications”
American University has recently been home to a statue of Leonard Peltier, who was found guilty of killing two FBI officers in the 1970s. Now the statue is coming down.
WJLA News reports:
AU removing controversial statue from campus
American University plans to remove a controversial statue from its campus after an outcry from law enforcement groups.
The statue depicts Native American activist Leonard Peltier who is serving two life terms for the 1975 murders of FBI Special Agents Jack Coler and Ronald Williams.
Supporters believe Peltier was wrongly convicted – even framed. But critics call him “a cold-blooded killer” and they were outraged when the giant statue landed on the American University campus, prominently displayed near Ward Circle.
At first, responding to reporters’ questions, AU took no position on the artwork. But that changed this week.
“The decision to host the Peltier statue required a more thorough assessment of the implications of placing the piece in a prominent, public space outside the museum. With the benefit of a fuller review, we have made a decision to remove the piece from this location,” the university said in a statement.
The statement continued, “the subject matter and placement of the piece improperly suggested that American University has assumed an advocacy position of clemency, when no such institutional position has been taken.”
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