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Airbrushing George Washington

Found this report on the web site of People For the American Way.  I hope this is a joke but I'm afraid it's true.


Georgia School District "Touches Up" Famous George Washington Painting: What’s Next, The Washington Monument?

In response to a reported "touch up" by a Georgia school district to Emanuel Leutze’s famous painting Washington Crossing the Delaware in fifth grade history textbooks, People For the American Way Foundation suggested specific disciplinary action for school officials. Muscogee County school district officials, worried that Washington’s watch, lying across his right thigh, might look to some fifth grader like the general’s genitalia, used paint brushes to touch up the page in over 2,300 books.

"Kids are disciplined for defacing school textbooks, so let’s make the punishment fit the school officials’ crime," said Carole Shields, People For the American Way Foundation president. "The superintendent should be kept after school to write on the blackboard 100 times: I WILL NOT DEFACE PUBLIC PROPERTY, I WILL NOT DEFACE PUBLIC PROPERTY."

According to yesterday’s Atlanta Journal Constitution, teacher aides spent nearly two weeks painting over the offending watch because of how fifth grade students might react.

"While Kansas is censoring evolution out of the state’s science standards, this Georgia school district is going for a new low in censorship by taking out what isn’t there just in case someone might imagine it is. By this standard, the school district could end up with nothing left to teach," said Shields.

School officials in some Cobb County schools went one step further in their censorship of the same painting. They ripped the page right out of the textbooks.

The historic painting can be viewed online at

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