A school’s mural removal: should kids be shielded from brutal US history?

Every day at a San Francisco high school, students pass artwork depicting slavery and violence against Native Americans Depending on whom you ask, a 1,600-sq-ft art installation at George Washington high school in San Francisco is either an unflinching look at American history, a stark depiction of violence against oppressed minorities or both. In New Deal-era murals spanning the staircase and lobby, the Russian emigre Victor Arnautoff depicted Washington in 13 scenes. Two in particular have generated student complaints for more than 50 years, and in April, an ad hoc committee recommended that the artwork be archived and removed. In one, the statesman stands over a map of a young America while pointing westward; at the end of his arm, …