Historical Rewrites don’t solve PRESENT day issues
They can rename all the facilities they want. At the end of the day the 13th Amendment still allows for legalized slavery, so in my opinion, keeping the names of slavers for these facilities is just. Instead of trying to sanitize and normalize legalized slavery, why not just change the laws so America does not have 25% of the world’s prisoners with 5% of the world population? Wouldn’t that be easier? Trying to find an “easy” fix for our broken system by “changing Correctional facility names” is not a solution.
No more draconian laws, sentencing nonviolent offenders to life? As opposed to rewriting history, let’s try to LEARN from it, to make a better future. After all those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it, and when you rewrite it, you’re not going to learn anything from it.
This is NOT an issue that is selective to southern states, even Rikers Island was named after a slaver/kidnapper. Instead of changing the name, an idiotic solution, let’s try and change what makes people end up there in the first place and the conditions of the institution. Those are the things that ACTUALLY matter.
Facility name changes – because if we change a flamingo to a duck, it’s now a duck, not a flamingo…wait…
The North Carolina Department of Public Safety (DPS) stated on September 30, 2021, more than 156 years after the conclusion of the Civil War, that four prisons and a drug addiction treatment facility will be renamed to honor racists, enslavers, and chattel slavery, respectively.
According to the institution’s official name, Cameron Morrison, who served as governor of North Carolina from 1921 to 1925, was the inspiration for the institution’s first name. He was the leader of the “Red Shirts” towards the close of the nineteenth century, a group whose members backed white supremacy and terrorized African-American voters. Richmond Correctional Facility will be the name of the facility going forward.
The DART Cherry residential treatment facility in Goldsboro was named after Gregg Cherry, who served as governor from 1945 to 1949 and “advocated to drop civil rights from the Democratic party platform,” according to DPS. The DART Center is now referred to simply as that.
The Polk Correctional Institution near Butner, North Carolina, was named in honor of Revolutionary War general William Polk, who was also a slave owner. The Grantville Correctional Institution is the name that has been given to the facility.
The Caledonia Correctional Institution got its name from a historic slave-holding farm that used to be on the prison’s grounds near Tillery, South Carolina. The Roanoke River Correctional Institution is the name that has been given to the facility.
The Swant to Correctional Center for Women took its name from an Asheville tunnel whose construction cost the lives of a large number of Black convicts who were forced to work on it in the late 1800s.
“These changes are being made to better reflect the diversity of modern-day society,” according to Commissioner of Prisons Todd Ishee. “In this day and age, it is unacceptable to maintain facility names with negative historical connotations.” And that’s primarily because now-a-day prison facilities have positive present-day connotations. It blows my mind how idiotic some of the people who run prisons and work at them actually are. It’s like taking a page out of Orwell’s 1984 with their doublespeak. American history, as a norm for most countries, is violent, and oppressive to select minorities, that change throughout time.
If we are only supposed to have a sanitized version of “positive history” then we essentially will have no history at all. Furthermore, pretending it did not happen is not a solution to preventing it from occurring in the future. Almost every race, color, and creed has taken a turn being Oppressed in America.
“Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered” – George Ornwell, 1984
The name revisions were the outcome of a study of the names of the over 1,900 structures managed by the Department of Public Works. Contributions were made to the renaming process by employees at the five renamed institutions, many of whom were African-American.
“I strongly believe that they should not have to work in facilities named to honor those who may have oppressed their ancestors,” said Ishee. What about the people who live in them?
Ishee, on the other hand, remained deafeningly silent regarding the captives imprisoned in these institutions, who are being subjected to repression. As far as I can tell, the United States is unusual among nations in that it has memorialized and built buildings in honor of the side that lost the American Civil War despite the fact that its leaders would have been executed in any other country had they been victorious. Typically, only the victorious parties in civil wars reap the benefits of their triumph.
Instead of trying to erase history, we should be embracing it and learning from the past. Not running from it with our metaphorical fingers in our ears like children.
Source (which contained no ranting): PLN