American Indian leaders say controversial mural at SF high school should stay

American Indian leaders are speaking out about a controversial mural at San Francisco's Washington High School. Those leaders are saying despite the violent depiction, the murals should stay where they are.

Those American Indian leaders delivered a series of letters to San Francisco's school district saying the mural should stay right where it is as a reminder about the past for students looking to the future. The group started their day blessing a series of letters from author Alice Walker, the longshoreman’s union and an elder from the Choctaw nation.

The letters are set to be delivered to San Francisco's school board and superintendent.

Those letters and leaders calling for the murals painted on the walls of Washington High School depicting the first president standing over the body an American Indian to be preserved.

"We want to keep those up as visual evidence that these atrocities happened to our native peoples," said Tamaka Bailey from the Choctaw Nation.

A school board representative took the letters, and said she would forward them to board members and Superintendent Vincent Matthews.

The leaders saying the shocking content is a reminder of a dark time in our nation's history.

"And that should be part of the conversation," said John Learned of the Cheyenne Arapaho Tribe. "And there should be something as I was telling someone here about putting a story with that so everyone knows what it is."

Rather than erase that depiction they say the murals should be used as an opportunity to teach.

"If we could develop a curriculum that changes that narrative and flips the dialog so you show, next to those murals you can have something that shows that this country was always here, it wasn't founded on this Manifest Destiny," said Chief Eagle Robinson from the Rosebud Sioux Tribe.

KTVU heard back from School Board President Mark Sanchez who said he welcomes the input from the American Indian community.