Growing up we were told “we are known by the friends we keep.” We are especially proud of the friends that influenced our lives, molding our character, making us better persons. In studying history, we are impressed with the women and men who stand out and have made our country and community a sanctuary for human progress.
William Quantrill, Nathan Bedford Forrest, and Roger Taney do not fit that bill. Their racist views and the violence they unleased are dark chapters in American history. Naming the streets after southern belligerents reflects the reaction of City leaders in the 1950s to upend racial segregation and forever honor those who betrayed our country.
I support the City Council’s “scheme” to rename certain streets. The mayor’s efforts has started a conversation raising an important issue for our community and future generations. We should only name streets after people who most of us can be proud of, not terrorists, insurrectionists or a Supreme Court Justice who rejected human rights and decency.