If at first you don’t succeed…

Charlottesville City’s expedient, politically correct first attempt to rebrand Robert E. Lee Park was a bust.

In an effort to placate violent leftist dissidents, Charlottesville City Council, at their June 5, 2017 meeting, voted to rename the City’s Lee Park and Jackson Park with presumably less “offensive” designations. That night, in the eyes of the government, Lee Park became “Emancipation Park,” and Jackson Park became “Justice Park.”

While many people continued to refer to the parks by their original names, other members of the public were not mollified by the Council’s re-envisioning or even the process by which the new monikers were selected.

Appearing before the governing body on October 17, 2017, activist, Mary Carey, excoriated City Council for the re-naming bungle, claiming that the name “Emancipation Park” was “disrespectful and thoughtless,” showing a “lack of care for people of color.”

Carey, backed by the Albemarle-Charlottesville NAACP—and hundreds of petition signatures—demanded a do-over for Emancipation Park, which eventually was granted (along with a potential re-renaming of “Justice” Park, as well) by the City.

While the City-sponsored March 6, 2018 renaming-survey warned in advance that the names “Lee Park” and “Jackson Park” would not be considered, that did not stop a plurality of respondents (24%; 1822 votes) from writing-in “Lee Park” in the survey’s “other” field.

Following Lee Park, the next most popular names were the banal, Soviet-esque “Market Street Park” (22%; 1647 votes) and the more poignant “Vinegar Hill Park” (17%; 1266 votes), both of which appeared on the government-approved, pre-selected list of choices. Due to the construction of the survey, respondents were allowed to designate up to three pre-selected names (in order of preference) , while only one write-in “vote” was allowed per ballot.

Other popular write-ins included references to Heather Heyer, Donald Trump, Parky McParkface, Adolph Hitler, and Gregory Swanson.

(Information provided by the City on the renaming of Jackson Park was incomplete, and thus was not included in this report.)

UPDATE 4/6/2018, 10:27 AM: The Charlottesville Daily Progress has coverage of this story but has completely omitted referencing the 1822 write-in votes for Lee, as if they never were cast. 

See below for a chart displaying the top results for the re-renaming of Lee Park (click for larger image):

 

8 COMMENTS

  1. That’s democracy according to the Charlottesville City Council. “You have these choices to choose from. Please choose carefully!” reads the form in bold letters. In a small light grey font however there is a note: “The City Council reserves the right to choose its own preference. This option will only be used to prevent an angry mob from burning the city to the ground”.

    Ok, I’m joking about burning the city down. That is very unlikely due to the city council’s knee jerk accomodation to the very radicals that might just attempt the bonfire approach.

  2. We prefer to rename the Park the same name. Lee Jackson Park or Lee Park. Whatever the name was.
    The statue is Historical regarding the Civil War. A war never to be lived again, we hope. Many lives were
    Lost. We never want to forget. Read up on the war and learn why we don’t want to move or change the
    Statues. Look at Syria today. That will tell you a lot.
    .

  3. As Adam Serwer wrote in the Atlantic this morning about NYC’s removal of a statue honoring a gynecologist who experimented on enslaved women:

    Just as the Confederate Lost Cause deserves its reckoning, so does [Lee} deserve his. . . . Removing [Lee’s] statue is not running from history. It is seeing history with the clarity it demands.

  4. How can you see it by erasing it Ken? Mr Serwer has an opinion which of course is welcomed by the Atlantic. Progressives just cannot bring themselves to admit that honorable men fought for the Confederacy. They would rather apply today’s standards to people that lived and made life decision over a 130 years ago.

  5. Al, the Atlantic almost hired a writer from National Review. Or rather, they did hire him, and only fired him after he initially doubled down on flip comments about hanging women who have abortions. In regards to honorable men, no one is honorable all the time, and even the best people have faults and make mistakes.

    I would prefer that the Lee and Jackson statues remain in place, but with signage noting they were erected for two reasons: 1) to promote a myth that the war was principled and noble and not really about slavery, and 2) to remind African-Americans of who was in charge. Jackson and Lee were chiefly honored as symbols for those ideas. Never mind whether progressives acknowledge what was honorable and admirable about the men themselves. The statues should be removed not to dishonor those men, but to dishonor and discredit the lies told and willingly believed about the war. Those are essentially racist lies, not because everyone who buys them is an awful bigot – they aren’t – but because they refuse to understand and relate to the feelings of African-Americans.

    If you really want to honor Lee himself, heed his words and his wishes: “I think it wiser not to keep open the sores of war but to follow the examples of those nations who endeavored to obliterate the marks of civil strife, to commit to oblivion the feelings engendered.” – Robert E. Lee on a proposed Gettysburg memorial.

  6. The renaming will never stop. The removal of American iconography will never stop. The forces which got Hillary elected (the electoral college is a sham and will soon be abolished) will eventually win out. The true vision of equality, reparation, and diversity will soon be realized. Jim Crow and the fascist establishment will finally die. The democratic-socialists learned from the last election. The movement will turn out in incredible numbers to prevent the fascists from stealing the election again. Resist until the people come to power again, then crush the opposition! Never relinquish control again!

  7. Sarcasm is so much easier than rebuttal. At least “Cocaine Mitch” is funny – so unfair it’s beyond bizarre, but at least funny.

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