- The Washington Times - Monday, May 18, 2015

Marquette University has removed a mural on campus that honored a former member of the Black Panther Party who was convicted in 1977 of murdering a New Jersey state trooper and received political asylum in Cuba after escaping from a state prison.

The mural of Assata Shakur, formerly known as Joanne Chesimard, has been on display at the Marquette Gender and Sexuality Resource Center since as early as March, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.

The mural featured two quotes from her 1987 autobiography and a black-and-white photo of Shakur, whom the FBI placed on its Most Wanted Terrorist List in 2013.

“No one is going to give you the education you need to overthrow them,” one quote on the wall read, the Journal Sentinel reported.

“Thank you to the Alpha Kappa Alpha’s [sic] for initiating the mural to be done at the GSRC,” read a post accompanied by photos on the Marquette center’s Facebook page. “It looks absolutely beautiful. Check it out at AMU 425.”

The controversial mural caught the attention of one of Marquette’s most vocal critics, assistant professor John McAdams, as well as WTMJ-AM talk show host Charlie Sykes, the Journal Sentinel reported.

The university tweeted a response to Mr. Sykes directly, saying, “it is being removed immediately. Our senior leadership just became aware of the mural, which was displayed in a remote area.”

“It’s extremely disappointing. We are reviewing the circumstances surrounding the mural and will take appropriate action,” the university said.

Marquette’s communications department tweeted out a link to a brief statement Sunday that said the mural was to be removed.

“Our university’s senior leadership just became aware of a mural that was created and displayed in a remote area of campus. This is extremely disappointing as the mural does not reflect the Guiding Values of Marquette University. It is being removed immediately,” the statement read. “We are reviewing the circumstances surrounding the mural and will take appropriate action.”

The university didn’t say when the mural would be removed, but a visit Monday morning to the center revealed it had been covered up with a fresh coat of white paint, the Journal Sentinel reported.

Photos of the mural were removed from the center’s Facebook page by 9 a.m. Monday, the newspaper said.


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