When they started to talk I felt like they were both looking for a reason any reason to say no.
Joyce, who prayed and prayed on it doesn’t think changing the names will help with academic achievement.
Smith-Juarez wondered if it would hurt alumni services and mentioned other schools named after people with terrible and complicated pasts. Schools named after arguably terrible men but men who weren’t Confederates. She has completely missed the moment.
Both mentioned the costs which Warren Jones pointed out won’t be the bank breakers that some people have made it out to be. He said it cost 197k to change Forrest to Westside high and the vast majority of that went to purchasing new uniforms for the sports teams.
They both seemed to be searching for any reasons to say no and only didn’t after they realized that would not play well. Their comments were disappointing and difficult to watch. Their yes votes were disingenuous at best.
Here is some knowledge that Warren Jones laid out yesterday.
2 of the schools were named after reconstruction and 4 shortly after the Brown vs the board of education rulings, times when the white power structure that ruled Jacksonville would want to put our black citizens “in their place”. These schools were not named to honor historical figures. Finnegan for beeps sake how far down did they have to go to find him, but to tell African Americans that they were worthless and would always be that way.
It was wrong that they were named after Confederate figures and its time we righted that wrong.