Memorializing Racists

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moderne
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Memorializing Racists

Post by moderne »

While the only confederate monument that I know of in KC has been removed, there is sentiment to remove all memorials and street names of historical personages with racist attitudes. The JC Nichols name is most often bandied about. The Nichols Pkwy probably could go, but Nichols Road?
The Nichols fountain was donated by his family as a memorial. Can the city rename it without offering to return it to the family? What about the statue of Andrew Jackson in front of the courthouse ? Not only an "owner" of enslaved persons, but responsible directly for native american genocide. Should the county be renamed? There are numerous streets named for early Kansas Citians who were guilty of holding enslaved persons.

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by herrfrank »

Are people also advocating the removal of the Policemen and Firemen Memorial fountain on 31st Street? Where does this end?

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by Highlander »

moderne wrote:
Wed Jun 10, 2020 2:18 pm
While the only confederate monument that I know of in KC has been removed, there is sentiment to remove all memorials and street names of historical personages with racist attitudes. The JC Nichols name is most often bandied about. The Nichols Pkwy probably could go, but Nichols Road?
The Nichols fountain was donated by his family as a memorial. Can the city rename it without offering to return it to the family? What about the statue of Andrew Jackson in front of the courthouse ? Not only an "owner" of enslaved persons, but responsible directly for native american genocide. Should the county be renamed? There are numerous streets named for early Kansas Citians who were guilty of holding enslaved persons.
I don't have a problem with removing confederate monuments in the US, I favor it. Most were not innocently erected as historical markers but to intimidate blacks during the post reconstruction in the south and other periods of racial strife up until the 1960's. Plus the confederacy was an enemy of the US and the individuals the monuments honor are known solely because they fought against the US and to prolong slavery.

I am more reluctant to demonize individuals who are honored for building the country and the city - things other than fighting
to preserve slavery. If we started using the criteria you are suggesting, about every individual would be excluded from having statues in their honor and places named after them. Lincoln said if he could preserve the union and free none of the slaves, he would do that. That's a bit out of context but many use that phrase (or part of a phrase as it is) to be critical of Lincoln's character. Get rid of the confederate nonsense and perhaps a few others that were seriously atypical for their times and leave it at that.

A little about the history of the fountain. It was built for another purpose but acquired by the Nichols family and donated to the city.

https://www.kcur.org/arts-life/2014-12- ... in-returns

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by FangKC »

I find it incredible that we have military bases named after Confederate military leaders in the United States.

I'm okay with renaming J.C. Nichols Parkway and the fountain.

I'm not sure Nichols Road is named after J.C. Nichols. I think it might be named after Miller Nichols, but I could be wrong about that.

I am also okay with taking down the statue of Andrew Jackson in front of the Courthouse. If some group wants to take it and put it on private land, then fine. As far as changing the name of the county, I'm okay with that too.

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by FangKC »


KCMO Parks Board considers renaming J.C. Nichols Fountain, Parkway


https://www.kctv5.com/news/local_news/k ... 2e072.html

He ‘stood for hatred’: Kansas City leaders push to rename J.C. Nichols fountain, road

https://www.kansascity.com/news/politic ... 21616.html

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by Highlander »

FangKC wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 2:50 am
I find it incredible that we have military bases named after Confederate military leaders in the United States.
What's more amazing is that some of these military bases are named after rather mediocre military leaders (e.g., Braxton Bragg and George Pickett), and in one case, probably the most inept military commander in US history: John Bell Hood. As a General, Hood was an absolute disaster for the confederacy. After losing Atlanta, his recklessness resulted in total defeat at Franklin and Nashville. Why would we ever want to name a fort after such a complete failure. Probably the most competent of the southern commanders, Longstreet, has nothing named after him probably because he cooperated with northern interests in the post civil war era. There are very few statues of him in the south today. Wonder why?

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by Anthony_Hugo98 »

Highlander wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 3:34 am
FangKC wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 2:50 am
I find it incredible that we have military bases named after Confederate military leaders in the United States.
What's more amazing is that some of these military bases are named after rather mediocre military leaders (e.g., Braxton Bragg and George Pickett), and in one case, probably the most inept military commander in US history: John Bell Hood. As a General, Hood was an absolute disaster for the confederacy. After losing Atlanta, his recklessness resulted in total defeat at Franklin and Nashville. Why would we ever want to name a fort after such a complete failure.
If we’re arguing the ineptness of military leaders of the civil war, the north had a much larger issue, many of those leaders had no true military experience, but garnered those positions through the oligarchy of the union military of the time and family names. Between Generals like Burnside, McClellan, Buell. Regardless of that, I agree with we’re you’re coming from for public ROW, like the road, however, a privately donated item like the fountain could retain the name, maybe with something to address the history of it better?
For all my military brothers and sisters out there, thanks for paving the way, ill do my best! AIRBORNE!

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by mykn »

I'm all for a mix of removal, renaming, and recontextualization. If something cannot be removed for some reason, then I see nothing wrong with adding context or memorials to their victims.

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by earthling »

Gut says remove in public places as broad as possible. Reason says deal with each case by case.

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by Riverite »

I say we just remove any confederate, and JC Nichols. Since he made his money through racist covenants and redlining. Sure it’s history, but it would be better if we just made a plaque or museum for redlining to educate people. No one is really learning that much from a fountain. For people who did bad things but not in the context we are celebrating them. Then i think adding context to their statues would be better

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by flyingember »

We shouldn't be memorializing bad actions of the past.

Maybe moving a statue of a person to a museum and surrounding it with context makes sense for many cases. We don't want to forget the history it tells.
Some of them are great pieces of art and the Nelson already tells many tales of history that are less than shiny. A part of the sculpture garden dedicated to memorials of the past would fit in.

Where the structure has no physical connection rename and re-associate, like the JC Nichols fountain.

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by chrizow »

i'm amazed this is even controversial, in some quarters. why on earth should our public spaces be marred with confederate propaganda? they are glorifying treason, insurrection and racism. "heritage, not hate" my ass. what heritage? separatism and slavery? grrrreeat.

J.C. Nichols is just as easy. What good does it serve to honor him? Doesn't sound like he was a "good dude" with a side helping of racism--his entire reason for notoriety is as being a redlining developer, right?

I saw an online petition to remove Todd George's name from the namesake road in Lee's Summit b/c he was a member of the KKK. If true, that's another easy "yes." There are too many folks worthy of honoring who AREN'T avowed racists.

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by earthling »

Those are easier on paper than maybe in execution. So should Jackson County be renamed?

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by chrizow »

Renaming streets or fountains is, or should be, very easy. I understand renaming a county after almost 200 years would be less easy, logistically, but just as easy, ideologically. No we shouldn't honor Andrew Jackson anymore, frankly. Maybe the county could continue to be called Jackson but there could be some kind of proclamation that it's not named after Andrew Jackson. Or maybe there is a better Jackson to name it after.

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by earthling »

Janet? Latoya? Let's do it!

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by flyingember »

earthling wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 2:14 pm
Janet? Latoya? Let's do it!
The Samuel L. Jackson County Courthouse

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by swid »

chrizow wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 2:10 pm
Or maybe there is a better Jackson to name it after.
FWIW, there is a precedent for that route.

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by Riverite »

swid wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 4:08 pm
chrizow wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 2:10 pm
Or maybe there is a better Jackson to name it after.
FWIW, there is a precedent for that route.
I would like to see it be Jesse Jackson, I’m not sure how I feel about naming it after an entertainer. But naming it after a civil rights activist would be poignant and in the spirit of getting rid of the attachment to Andrew jackson

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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by mykn »

flyingember wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 3:37 pm
earthling wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 2:14 pm
Janet? Latoya? Let's do it!
The Samuel L. Jackson County Courthouse
This

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FangKC
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Re: Memorializing Racists

Post by FangKC »

I don't see why it's such a big deal to change the name of a county. Countries and cities have changed names.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geographical_renaming

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