From the July 2 Philly.com:
A vandal lobbed black paint at a mural of former Philadelphia Mayor Frank Rizzo in the Italian Market over the weekend and sprayed “fascista” in red beneath him.
Police said they received a report on Saturday that the mural at 9th and Montrose streets had been hit and are investigating the incident. A large black splotch of paint hit directly over Rizzo’s right eye, and paint splattered along the parking lot that the mural faces. On Sunday afternoon, the occasional passer-by stopped to take a picture of the defaced former mayor and police commissioner.
Rizzo was a fascist and I’m glad he’s long gone, but I can’t warm up to the barbarism of trashing public art. And would the rad guy who threw the paint, maybe after a few beers at The Dive, have the balls to face off against a live cop? Not likely.
I know the woman who painted the mural, a liberal academic and a good person. Apparently, the vandal(s) didn’t get the irony of the artist’s fascist-style depiction of Big Frank. He didn’t understand that the mural spoofs everything Rizzo stood for while, at the same time, pleasing the sort of people who admire fascists and other totalitarians. It is neatly subversive. The vandal is more of a totalitarian than Rizzo, another irony that he is too stupid to appreciate.