Petition calls for the removal of an IU Bloomington mural depicting a KKK rally

By Holly V Hays, Indy Star

Supporters of an online petition are calling for the removal of artwork displayed in an Indiana University-Bloomington lecture hall that depicts a Ku Klux Klan rally. 

The petition, started around two weeks ago, calls upon IU President Michael McRobbie and the IU Board of Trustees to remove one panel of the 22-panel mural. The panel, housed in Woodburn Hall, depicts a cross burning in front of a church and several Klansmen dressed in white robes.

The petition says the mural violates the university's diversity statement. As of Wednesday evening, the petition had more than 1,000 signatures, enough to present it to McRobbie and the IU Board of Trustees. 

"It is past time that Indiana University take a stand and denounce hate and intolerance in Indiana and on IU's campus," the petition reads.

The petition cites unrest in Charlottesville, Va., when violence erupted at a "Unite the Right" rally to protest the removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee from Emancipation Park. Statues also have been moved or removed in Austin, Texas, Baltimore and Lexington, Ky., among other cities.

In Indianapolis, City-County council members have called on the parks and recreation department to move a statue memorializing the deaths of more than 1,600 Confederate prisoners of war.