Parents of some Michigan elementary school students are irate over changes to the school’s “Hall of Heroes.”
South Arbor Charter Academy changed the 11-year-old mural by replacing paintings of Mother Teresa and Albert Einstein with those of Oprah Winfrey and President Obama, according to Fox News.
Images of other notables, including Gandhi and the Space Shuttle Challenger astronauts, have been replaced with Walt Disney and authors J.K. Rowling and Maya Angelou.
“This is no longer a hall of heroes. Now we have a hall of celebrities,” parent Craig Bergman told Fox News’ Todd Starnes. “The mere fact that you have talent doesn’t mean you are a hero. I want someone who made a life investment, perhaps they even sacrificed their life, so that our society and so our world could be a better place.”
Another parent, Todd Holliday, told Starnes he was worried that the mural changes would confuse his child about how to define what makes a hero.
“They might be successful business people, but they aren’t really heroes,” Holliday said.
The school defended the decision, saying the shift was about updating the mural with modern-day heroes.
“Heroes Hall has been a part of the school’s fabric for years,” school spokesperson Jennifer Hoff told Fox News. “In fact, the old mural had been on the wall for at least 11 years. As with all things over time, it was showing its age from the activities of being an active school and needed some repair.”
Parent Craig Bergman sees a more sinister reason behind the new faces, most of whom are liberal leaders.
“Previously, it was very well-balanced and respected a lot of different thoughts,” Bergman said. “Instead, it’s become more of a political issue. There’s definitely a certain genre of pictures here.”
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