Kansas City: Rename MLK Boulevard?

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Jul 25, 2018
Boulder, CO
"White Supremacists/Trump Change Kansas City Street from MLK" in 3...2...1...
Lol, you're a few days late on that one. The pastors already started that mantra & called this nothing but sheer white privelege & systemic racism prior to the vote.

"Designed in the late 19th century by landscape architect George Kessler as part of the city’s original parks and boulevard system, the road is named for Paseo De La Reforma in Mexico City. A portion of the street was added to the National Register of Historic Places along with parks and boulevards in Midtown and the Historic Northeast.

“I’m proud of Kansas City — so proud,” Diane Euston, a member of Save The Paseo, said in a video posted to the group’s Facebook page, “because we felt like people just weren’t heard.”

The group objected to the City Council’s decision to waive a rule requiring that 75 percent of residents sign off on any street name changes. Supporters of MLK Blvd. said that rule has rarely been enforced.

Euston said the group wanted to see King honored in Kansas City but not at the expense of “people who didn’t have a say.”

“And now, today, they had a say,” she said.

Former Councilwoman Alissia Canady, who voted against renaming The Paseo for King, said in the video the issue was difficult because she respected the MLK Blvd. supporters, led primarily by the Kansas City chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and a group of clergy from the East Side. King helped found the SCLC.

“They wanted to do a good thing, but they went about it the wrong way,” Canady said. “And the voters of Kansas City have decided.”

The vote caps a year and a half of debate, which started after the ministers approached the Board of Parks and Recreation Commissioners with the idea of renaming The Paseo for King and were rebuffed. The parks department oversees the city’s boulevard system.

The ministers then began collecting signatures to put the issue on the August or November 2018 ballot, but fell short.

At the same time, then-Mayor Sly James formed a citizens’ commission to hold public hearings and make recommendations on how to honor King. That commission recommended The Paseo as a third option behind the forthcoming single terminal at Kansas City International Airport and 63rd Street.