New Mexico: Lapse of Taste

Lapse of Taste

When Roadrunners, the official magazine of the New Mexico State Police Association, commissioned a painting in honor of highway patrolmen, artist Leonard Frietze found a model that was "fairly moving . . . and bold." Said he: "It was supposed to epitomize an individual who wanted to gallantly protect the citizens." His choice: a 1938 portrait of Adolf Hitler.

Frietze's painting appeared on the back cover of the magazine's fall 1990 issue and sparked a loud outcry. Susan Seligman, state coordinator for the Anti-Defamation League, denounced it as "an unfortunate and insensitive choice. Can you imagine a Holocaust survivor seeing the...

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