A Catholic group blasted the Catholic University of America (CUA) for featuring a portrait of George Floyd as Jesus Christ, the latter of whom is considered God within Christianity.
The Cardinal Newman Society, a non-profit Catholic organization that acts as a guide for families to choose faithful, doctrinally-based Catholic universities, said that the painting did students a major disservice. The group told The Daily Signal, “This painting dangerously confuses students about Christ’s divinity and perfection, reducing Jesus to a controversial and troubled public figure.”
It added that the portrait profanes “a divine image to make a political statement” and that it was “disrespectful regardless of the politics.” The group pointed out that the image is “just another symptom of the liberalization and secularization of our campus.”
In other words, it would be difficult to imagine a similar portrait of George Floyd acting as the Islamic prophet Mohammed or another sacred figure within another major religion.
Controversy about Jesus Christ within art is not new, but it is very rare to see similar controversies about revered people or divine beings in other religions.
George Floyd, a black man arrested for illegally using counterfeit money to buy cigarettes, died in 2020 while in Minneapolis police custody. Riots ensued after his death in the city and his name became a rallying cry for the radical, Marxist Black Lives Matter movement.