Anne Franke Memorial in Idaho Defaced with Swastika Stickers
On December 8, residents of Boise, Idaho expressed shock and grief over the vandalization of a statue of Anne Frank as well as other symbolic statues at the Wassmuth Center for Human Rights.
The statues were defaced with a simple sticker of a swastika with the words ‘We Are Everywhere.’ The sticker was placed directly on Anne Frank’s journal that her statue holds to embody the horrific events that she and her family faced during World War II.
The Anne Frank Memorial and the Wassmuth Center for Human Rights are powerful reminders in the heart of our beautiful city.— Mike Sharp (@Sharp208) December 9, 2020
This is a stain on all of us. pic.twitter.com/5qWm5V2sEa
The second statue vandalized was the freedom spiral which is meant to represent how language can cause one group to encourage hate and violence of others. The final statue represented the founder of the center Bill Wassmuth, a local priest who left his service to fight the white supremacy he discovered in his own backyard of Idaho.
Here’s a powerful image taken by our photographer Norman Kahler. The remnants of a swastika sticker placed on the face of Bill Wassmuth, the namesake of the Wassmuth Center for Human rights.— Mike Sharp (@Sharp208) December 9, 2020
Stickers go away. Small people go away. Giants remain. pic.twitter.com/FGvnpt9uTu
The current director of the Center, Dan Prinzig has stated this display of hate is, “a stab to the heart.” The Boise Police Chief Ryan Lee has condemned the offensive nature of the defacing and has set forth to work with the Anti-Defamation League to aid in its current investigation.
The IHRC strongly denounces the uncivil and threatening behavior against public officials and the Wassmuth Center for Human Rights. Protesting in a manner that degrades, threatens, and intimidates anyone abuses the constitutional right to free speech. (1 of 2)— Idaho Human Rights (@IdahoHRC) December 9, 2020
While this is the most recent attack, it is not the first this location has faced. Prinzing has voiced his concern for those who seek to continue these attacks on the community wondering, “Is this what we are becoming?” The mission of the Center is “to promote respect for human dignity and diversity through education and to foster individual responsibility to work for peace and justice.” Despite this attack, the Center will continue to strive to uphold its mission and hopefully those responsible will be found.