Originally published by CNS News on January 9, 2017
By Ron Hosko
Last week, we learned of separate imbroglios in our Nation’s capital, Washington, D.C., both involving what was depicted as “works of art.”
In one case, American University played host to a 9-foot wooden carving by a person using the moniker Rigo 23 which purported to mimic a self-portrait of American Indian “activist” Leonard Peltier. While few would disagree that the history of the American Indian has been replete with sadness and tragedy, the subject matter, Leonard Peltier, was a disgraceful, appalling representative of that struggle.
Simply stated, Peltier is a convicted killer of two FBI Agents, Ron Williams and Jack Coler on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota on June 26, 1975. The killings of agents Williams and Coler were anything but accidental – their car had over 125 bullet holes and their bodies showed evidence of having been killed at close range by a .223 type bullets. The carnage of that day still stands as one of the FBI’s bloodiest.
Rigo 23’s celebrated subject matter has appealed his conviction on multiple grounds, on multiple occasions, each time, including to the U.S. Supreme Court, failing. So he sits, rightfully convicted, in federal prison, currently desperate for an Obama clemency order that will never come.
While starving-artist Rigo 23 and others who blindly believe in the stream of falsities propounded by Peltier and his allies now complain that their freedom of expression is being muted, American University’s eyes have, albeit belatedly, been opened and the wooden disgrace has been removed from its prominent location. Law enforcement, particularly the FBI, are deaf to the complaints, knowing that mere removal of a patently offensive idol is far gentler treatment than Peltier gave two FBI agents, which was point-blank execution.
Meanwhile, U.S. Congressman Lacy Clay from Missouri, tried to one-up Rigo 23 in a battle for the Most Ignorant award of 2017, when he hung in the Congressional Annex a painting depicting police as pigs. Reportedly painted by a Cardinal Ritter College Prep graduate, the painting was offered heavy praise in the annual Congressional Art competition.