This Florida City Is Voting To Remove Several Confederate Names From Its Streets
One of the streets may be renamed after a black female police officer Frankie Mae Shivers.
August 31, 2017 at 6:10 pm
The Civil War may be over, but the fight against white supremacy lives on!
Although many have been happy to see these symbols honoring a hostile foreign power go away, many others have called for them to stay right where they are.
The president himself has called the statues "beautiful," and has made it clear he supports them remaining in place.
Now, Hollywood, Florida is making it clear where it stands on the issue.
According to the Associated Press, the Hollywood City Commission voted 5 to 1 to strip the names of Robert E. Lee, Nathan Bedford Forrest and John Bell Hood from its city streets.
Robert E. Lee was, of course, the leader of the Confederate army. Forrest was a lieutenant general and early KKK leader known for allegedly ordering the slaughter of black Union troops after they surrendered following the Battle of Fort Pillow. John Bell Hood was a general known for losing the Battle of Atlanta and for his campaigns in Tennessee.
The vote was also supported by the city’s Chamber of Commerce.
The commission members who voted to change the names of the streets said they’ll likely rename one of the streets after black female police officer Frankie Mae Shivers, who was shot to death in 1982. The group will decide for certain what to rename the streets at a later meeting.
Mayor Josh Levy, who is white, voted in support of changing the names, and said he hopes the move will be understood to be in “spirit of companionship” with the city’s black residents.
"These streets are symbols of men whose deeds symbolized oppression and bigotry against a whole group of people," Levy added.
Resident John Jacobs of the group Save Our Streets had a different take on the Confederate States of America generals. "These were not treasonous men. They were 19th century men and shouldn't be judged by 21st century standards," Jacobs said.
He did not elaborate on how rebelling against the government does not constitute treason. He did, however, say that those in support of changing the names had "waged a propaganda campaign by making outlandish and false accusations" against the Confederate generals.
A black resident, Benjamin Israel, didn't agree with Jacobs.
Responding to claims that those that live on the streets will be inconvenienced by the change, Israel said, "Think of the inconvenience of the Civil War. Over 600,000 were killed. This will help make a better America. This is not a racial matter. Most of the people killed in the Civil War were white."
Peter Hernandez was the single member of the commission who did not vote on the change. The only non-white member of the commission, Hernandez left the proceedings in protest, calling the vote part of “a Democratic national agenda that is being pushed upon us.”
Hernandez also claimed that city rules governing name change procedures were broken, and said that he feared this decision will lead to other street names being changed.
Hours before the commission meeting, things briefly turned chaotic when pro-Confederate protester Chris Tedino charged at about a 100 anti-Confederate demonstrators. He and his Confederate flag were quickly forced to the ground by Hollywood police. Fortunately, no one was injured.