Earlier this year, Nancy Pelosi lost her fight to keep a student painting depicting police officers as pigs hanging in the Capitol Building. Now, another elected official is fighting to keep a student painting of the Statue of Liberty dressed in a hijab hanging in his tax-payer funded district office.
The Orange County Register reports:
A student painting that depicts the Statue of Liberty wearing a Muslim hijab, displayed in congressman Lou Correa’s Santa Ana office, is being attacked as an unpatriotic violation of the separation of church and state by members of We the People Rising, a Claremont-based activist group that advocates stricter enforcement of immigration laws.
The group, including several Orange County participants, has asked without success that Correa remove the painting hanging with other finalists from the Democratic congressman’s student art competition.
Because of the complaint, Correa said he asked the House Office of Legislative Counsel for advice and was told there was no legal issue. That has not appeased the activists, who are tentatively planning a Sept. 11 protest at Correa’s district office.
“It’s a bad example for our congressman,” said Orange resident Mike McGertrick, an activist with We the People Rising. “He shouldn’t have anything religious in his office. … I would like to see our Congress people be right-down-the-line patriotic.”
McGertick went farther in his condemnation during a July 3 meeting with Correa’s district director, Claudio Gallegos, calling the hanging of the painting in the office “reprehensible and disrespectful.”
“In this day and age, we want to see that our elected officials are the utmost of patriotism,” McGertick says in a video the group recorded and posted on YouTube.
Correa sees nothing objectionable in the painting, which comes at a time of controversy over Donald Trump’s efforts to ban the entry to the U.S. of people from Muslim countries and about the treatment of Muslims in this country.