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SCULPTURE IS A TRIBUTE TO POLICE, THEIR WORK

I have just reread some of the comments made about my sculpture "Guardian Angel" for the C District Police Station. I must say that Common Council Majority Leader Rosemarie LoTempio's remarks are reckless and unwarranted attacks on this tribute to the police.

I have not portrayed police as "a pigeon." I have used imagery that references the dove of peace. This is not a statue of a police officer. My goal was to create a sculpture that was not only a tribute to the police and their work, but spoke to the spiritual values of the community, as well. The title of the piece alone should lead a thinking person to further investigate the sculpture.

With these attacks, LoTempio and others have poisoned the chance for meaningful dialogue. What these Council members are orchestrating is an end-run around a fair process and the work of the selection committee.

The reason the selection process exists is to bring together a committee that has the capability to envision the sculpture in its final form, at its final scale and in its final setting. Being elected a lawmaker does not automatically give one this ability, especially if he or she does not choose to try.

I am currently working on a sculpture in Finland and feel somewhat helpless being unable to engage in this discussion. I am getting only bits and pieces of news. I hope any final decisions will be held off until I return in a couple of weeks. This seems more reasonable than starting the process over.

KENNETH PAYNE

Buffalo

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