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Rallies planned in support of Forrest High name change

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Updated: 12/05/2013 8:34 pm

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Nathan Bedford Forrest is a name synonymous with controversy in Jacksonville and after years of debate it could soon be wiped off the walls of a Westside high school.

Opio Sokoni, president of the Jacksonville chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, is gearing up to lead two rallies in support of the change.

"Anything would be better than what it is right now. This guy was the first leader of the Ku Klux Klan and it's time for change here in Jacksonville," said Sokoni.

The proposal still has to pass a few more hurdles. First, the school board has to survey people who would be directly affected by the change. Then, Superintendent Dr. Nikolai Vitti will present the findings before the board.

"It's an embarrassment. It's time for Jacksonville to move forward," said Sokoni. 

But not everyone is on board with the change. Parent Helana Robinson, who has an 11th-grader in the school, said changing the name wouldn't make a difference.

"Why are we putting all that money into the name change instead of the kids?" said Robinson.

The school board will begin collecting community and alumni surveys Friday. The final collection is due to the superintendent by Dec 12.

The rallies in support of the name change will be held Friday on 103rd Street and Firestone Road from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

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king kaos - 12/6/2013 12:04 PM
0 Votes
History is history, and this guy was a huge part of this areas history. I dont like what a lot of black people did throughout history but I dont set up riots to get there names taken off of things. It is what it is and really the parent quoted in the stroy has the best "argument" Ive heard since this nonsense started... what about the kids? Couldnt the TIME and MONEY spent of this BS be MUCH better spent on improving something that matters? Just Ignant as usual... :(

Realchange - 12/6/2013 9:42 AM
2 Votes
Why are we still playing Michael Jackson music on air waves ? With number kids that have come forward it was pretty obvious that he had thing for little boys. During his death trial it was reveal ALL his children were produced by artificial insemination as he refused to touch women. Yet you have dedication after dedication occurring with no demand for it to stop. Same for Elmo actor it is know he would fly 15 year old boys up to his home to be a "father' figure to them, yet instead would have sex with them. No charges even though the records point to this happening Don't see the community rising up in anger demanding all Elmo episodes be pulled. Double edged sword here only certain activities reprehensible to some people are requiring removing someone from history. When the black community starts holding their own criminals guilty and removing them off the air then I will be open to a name change at that school if it occurs before that just shows which side really is racist in about their race can do no wrong.

Gunny48 - 12/5/2013 8:12 PM
1 Vote
Pants below your butt count as a yes I take it?
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