Offensive road names must go

Published 7:58 pm Tuesday, June 30, 2020

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To the editor,
There simply is no comparison between inconvenience and injustice.
At last week’s meeting of the Southampton County Board of Supervisors, I was disappointed to hear some of the comments made about maintaining offensive road names. Just because some supervisors or residents on those roads don’t find the names offensive doesn’t mean they aren’t. They are. To suggest otherwise illustrates a selective deafness to the larger conversation about inequality that’s happening across our nation. This is a conversation that must continue—even though it is uncomfortable, particularly because it’s uncomfortable. Only by having those conversations will we begin to start healing.
Gratefully, a majority of the board voted to initiate the road name changing process and to put the issue before the entire community at a public hearing. Otherwise, in deferring to the handful of citizens who live on the subject roads to initiate the change, they would have silenced the voices of thousands of other constituents. We all know many of their constituents and millions of others have had their voices silenced for far too long.

Sarah Hancock Poole
Gordonsville, Virginia

Formerly of Southampton County