Last week the City Council voted to consider the renaming of streets, parks and other locations in Austin that are reminiscent of slavery or racism. So this week, we asked you, "Do you think the city of Austin should change its name?" The name originates from Stephen F. Austin, known slavery supporter. A vast majority of readers voted the name should stay.
Of 169 readers who voted, a whopping 91% voted "No," that the city should keep its name, indicating in the comments that the name is part of a history that cannot be erased, and that it is also its own brand - not immediately associated with Stephen F. Austin.
"Austin has a brand that is admired worldwide. The name and brand are not associated with racism, slavery, or white supremacy, despite the realities of its namesake, Stephen F Austin."
Only eight people voted "Yes" to the city changing its name, citing the name represents racism.
"If it is upsetting to people, I have no problems changing it."
And lastly, seven readers voted "Unsure."
"Consistency is key - if parks, street names are being changed, then why not cities? However, it's history, and preserving these names could serve as a reminder of behavior we should not model based on the learnings of our past. Failures make us stronger. To erase names will erase history and the key learnings."
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