Breaking News
More () »

Human rights mural planned for site of antisemitic graffiti

The Boise City Department of Arts & History is leading the mural project. The project received a budget allocation of $35,000 from the city's general fund.
Credit: Brian Myrick / Idaho Press
A cyclist approaches the Eighth Street tunnel along the greenbelt in downtown Boise, Friday, July 8, 2022. The site has been chosen by the Boise City Department of Arts & History as the location of a Human Rights mural.

BOISE, Idaho — This article originally appeared in the Idaho Press.

A human rights mural at the site where antisemitic graffiti was spray painted last December is in the works.

The Boise City Department of Arts & History is taking the lead on the mural project, Director of Parks and Recreation Doug Holloway said. The Department of Parks and Recreation maintains the mural location, the Eighth Street tunnel adjacent to the Anne Frank Memorial.

“Any time you see antisemitic or racially related slurs that pop up anywhere they have a tendency to pop up a lot of times in locations in parks,” Holloway said. “It is pretty infrequent but when it does pop up, it is very disturbing and it is not the experience we want our citizens to see in Boise or visitors to see in Boise.”

The project received a budget allocation of $35,000 from the city's general fund, Holloway said.

The Arts & History team has a list of around 35 artists to call on and will work with stakeholders to pick three or four artists. In the next two to three weeks, the city hopes to narrow down the number of artists.

“The goal is to have it done by sometime in September,” Holloway said. “It would be a pretty tight turnaround but murals, they can be done fairly quick.”

There may be some detours on the greenbelt while the mural is in process.

“We’ll have to protect what the artist is doing,” Holloway said.

Over the past few years, antisemitic incidents have kept happening in Boise. The Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial was defaced with antisemitic graffiti in 2017 and 2020. In the past two years, other graffiti appeared in downtown Boise on the Idaho Building, in the Kristin Armstrong Municipal Park and on tunnels of the Greenbelt. 

In December, antisemitic flyers were distributed in the North End neighborhood of Boise.

Stakeholders previously told the Idaho Press that Idaho has “weak” hate crime laws and that they were looking for non-legal ways to respond to such incidents.

But the issue continues.

A white nationalist concert is scheduled for Saturday, July 9, according to the Idaho Statesman. The event is called “Hills of Hate Camp.” The event was also held in Boise in 2012 and 2017, the Statesman reported, though previously the event took place near Melba on private property.

This article originally appeared in the Idaho Press, read more on IdahoPress.com.

Watch more Local News:

See the latest news from around the Treasure Valley and the Gem State in our YouTube playlist:

Before You Leave, Check This Out