Tag Archives: renaming

Bill Blocking Local Governments from Renaming Parks Goes to Gov

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A proposal to bar local governments from renaming parks or monuments honoring Tennessee’s military figures is headed to the governor for his consideration.
The measure sponsored by Republican Sen. Bill Ketron of Murfreesboro was approved 26-3 by the Senate on Thursday. The companion bill passed the house 69-22 last month.
Sponsors say the legislation is aimed at preventing shifting views and changing “demographics” from erasing memorials to historical figures from the Civil War and other conflicts.
The bill would allow local governments seeking to change the names of parks to seek permission from the Tennessee Historical Commission.
Critics say it should be left to local governments to decide the naming of parks.
Republican Gov. Bill Haslam is expected to review the legislation once it reaches his desk.

House Votes 69-22 to Block Local Government Renaming of Historical Monuments

The Tennessee House of Representatives approved a bill that would make it harder to rename or move war monuments, including those commemorating the Civil War, reports Chas Sisk.
House lawmakers voted 69-22 in favor of legislation that forces local governments to get permission from the Tennessee Historical Commission before moving or renaming any memorial, park, building, street, school or other monument to the state’s war dead or heroes. They also rejected a Democratic-led amendment to protect monuments to the Civil Rights Movement by a similar vote.
“It’s important that our children and the next generation of children and their children see history in the context of what we see history today,” said the measure’s sponsor, state Rep. Steve McDaniel, R-Parkers Crossroads. “If we begin to remove those pieces of history across this state, then one doesn’t get an accurate view of our history.”
The vote, which took place on the same day that House lawmakers honored black soldiers in the Civil War, follows repeated controversies over statutes that were erected and government facilities that have been named to honor Civil War figures. In anticipation of the measure passing, the Memphis City Council hurriedly renamed three city parks earlier this month that honored Confederate soldiers and leaders.
House Bill 553 breezed through committees on voice votes on its way to the House floor. But Democrats, led by lawmakers from Memphis, forced a 40-minute debate over the measure Monday. Several argued that there is no need to keep up monuments that lionize figures who are now held in disrepute.

Note: See also Jeff Woods, whose report starts like this:
The state House commemorated Black History Month this evening with prayer, dramatic readings and songs from the Fisk Jubilee Singers. Then it was back to regular business for the white Republican supermajority: Telling the rest of us who’s boss