Outrage over 'cops as warthogs' painting continues as LA police union protests

Mathew BarnettJan 12, 2017

Seven months ago, I was pleased to welcome David Pulphus, a very talented 18-year old constituent of mine from St. Louis, to Capitol Hill, as we unveiled his painting, entitled "Untitled #1"; the 1st place victor in my annual Congressional Art Competition in Missouri's 1st congressional district.

Last week, Congressman Duncan Hunter, R-California, was the first to take the painting down, after Republicans complained about it and asked House GOP leadership to intervene.

The painting is by David Pulphus, a recent high school graduate who lives in the district of Democratic U.S. Rep. William Lacy Clay, which includes Ferguson, Mo.

The painting, which won an art competition hosted by Clay previous year, also depicts some police as pigs.

However, after Clay and other lawmakers in the Congressional Black Caucus held an event on Tuesday to rehang the controversial painting, it was taken back down.

In a statement addressing why Lamborn removed the painting again on Tuesday, he said, "Just yesterday, we honored Law Enforcement Appreciation Day".

There is drama in the Capitol over a spat between the Congressional Black Caucus and House Republicans involving whether or not a painting should be on display, Politico reports.


After Clay restored the painting, Rep. Doug Lamborn, R-Colo., removed it again and took it to Clay's office. "That's what this is really about", Hunter said. The paper reported the painting might have even been removed and re-hung a third time Tuesday.

"His winning entry is a provocative, symbolic representation of the great anger, pain, frustration, and deep deficit in trust for local law enforcement that many young African-Americans feel in their heart", said Clay. "In accordance with this policy, exhibits depicting subjects of contemporary political controversy or a sensationalistic or gruesome nature are not allowed". "Clay agrees with this painting's depiction of police officers as pigs looking to gun down innocent people and he shouldn't cowardly hide behind the first amendment to justify re-hanging the picture". In the background, the St. Louis Gateway Arch appears, along with a black man peering out from behind prison bars.

The Missouri congressman said it is "pathetic" that some Republicans and "alt-right media types" constantly refer to themselves as constitutional conservatives, but don't think the same document protects the free-speech rights of his constituent.

Pulphus' work was one of hundreds of winners in the annual Congressional Arts Competition.

Just one week into the 115th Congress and the House is already in the midst of a full-fledged battle - over constituent artwork in a Capitol Hill tunnel.

"Over the last five years - he's 18 - at the age of 13 he witnessed Trey Von Martin's death at the hands of someone who was supposed to be an authority - George Zimmerman - whose behavior and actions were animalistic", Clay said. Also, we hope for your sake you don't have Twitter, David Pulphus.

Related Articles:



« Previous article
Next article »


Popular Pages

Fallon feeling 'Golden' glow for awards show
One of the most highly anticipated events of this awards season is set to take place on Sunday night - the Golden Globes. I think the Foreign Press will be sharing the love tonight, as we get another actor from another movie winning.

NC State game postponed until Sunday
State kept providing UNC with possessions due to carelessness with the ball, while the Tar Heels refused to return the favor. After turning it over 20 times in a loss at Georgia Tech, the Tar Heels gave it away 18 times against Clemson.

Someone needs to explain to Trump how Toyota actually makes money
President-elect Donald Trump threatened Toyota Motor Corp. on Thursday not to build a new plant in Mexico. Trump's tweet was followed by Toyota shares dropping more than 3% in morning trade in Tokyo on Friday.

Online messaging and email giants face European Union privacy crackdown
They say the data they use cannot identify the user and is therefore low risk, making asking for consent every time too onerous. Additionally, it aims to set a strategic approach to issues concerning the global transfer of personal data .

Rooney's best day is ahead, says Mourinho
Bournemouth paid the price for making 11 changes - an entire team - by losing 3-0 to League One (third tier) club Millwall. Reading boss Jaap Stam , who played 127 times for United, added: "Wayne has been a great player from the beginning".

Canadians reported safe after Florida airport shooting that left five dead
Travelers are also required to tell airline staff at the check-in desk about any weapons that are being transported. There were five people dead and a gunman who appeared to be acting alone has been arrested, say officials.

Bengaluru: After New Year shame, woman in Burqa molested in broad daylight
According to a media report, women were not only molested and groped by a group of men but lewd remarks were also hurled at them. Security footage in the area showed a group of bystanders who witnessed the assault but made no effort to put a stop to it.

Broncos hire Vance Joseph as new head coach
Former Broncos offensive coordinator and current Dolphins Coach Adam Gase gave a ringing endorsement of Joseph's abilities. Sporting News also reported last week that the Broncos' head coaching job was Joseph's to lose heading into his interview.

Amazon Chase Card Offers Cash Back For Prime Members
In order to avail the brand new card that was released this Wednesday, interested users need to sign up for Amazon Prime . According to Amazon , a purchase of $1,000 on Amazon .com would earn $50 that could be redeemed on future purchases.

Torino name their price for Arsenal target Belotti
Arsenal have had a £56m bid for striker Andrea Belotti rejected, according to Torino's sporting director Gianluca Petrachi.