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The process San Fran officials used to decide ‘racist’ school names is made public and truly embarrassing

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In a shameful chapter of misguided progressivism, Democrats on the San Francisco school board voted 6-1 to strip the names of 44 schools that honor historical leaders such as Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson and George Washington.

Claiming racism and oppression connections, the board gave preliminary approval to rename the schools, deciding these American icons are not fit to have schools named after them, according to the community news website Mission Local — not only did Francis Scott Key, author of the national anthem, fail to make the cut, so too did Paul Revere.



Mission Local’s Joe Eskenazi, a San Francisco native, panned what he described as a “remarkably flawed process,” adding what “could have been inclusive and illuminating and fostered a discussion about community values and representation — and led to a lot of growth and understanding and consensus — instead became an insular process, beset by ignorance and incompetence.”

Worse yet, Eskenazi noted, the board “chose to ratify each and every finding from the renaming committee — even when historical errors and methodological recklessness was known.” Historians were not consulted.

The article explained that the committee showed its work, linking to Zoom meetings held and to a Google spreadsheet, which cited Wikipedia entries justifying the actions taken.

Calling it “hilariously bad,” Washington Free Beacon staff writer Alex Griswold took to Twitter to detail some findings from the spreadsheet, offering notes on how ridiculous they were.

Paul Revere made his famous midnight ride warning the American colonial militia in April 1775 that the British were coming, but the renaming committee tagged him for a disqualifying role that proved to be erroneous.

Eskenazi wrote: “This is a telephone game-like invention of fact, and never happened.”

Hell, even Sen. Diane Feinstein failed to make the cut — the liberal senator’s hug of Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., following the confirmation hearing of now-Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett, lives on?

The problem being, Feinstein got hit for an incident that occurred before she took office as mayor of San Francisco.

Here is Griswold’s take on George Washington and Abraham Lincoln:

An entry explaining the decision to rename Argonne Elementary School driving Griswold over the edge:

Mission High School was also tagged for a potential name change, with the renaming committee stating: “All CA missions are sites of slavery and colonization.”

Alamo Elementary was hit as well: “‘Remember the Alamo’ was a call for vengeance against Mexicans that was used as a rallying cry at San Jacinto.”

As for no historians being involved, Eskenazi spoke with six experts about the board’s actions — here are a couple of those opinions.

“Yes, there should have been historians involved,” said Jim Grossman, the executive director of the American Historical Association, and a former University of Chicago professor. “Whenever decisions are made, there should be people who can provide context and facts. We’ve learned this with covid.”

“The decision not to include historians in the process seems misguided — and assumes a political agenda that is not necessarily fair,” says Professor Nicole Maurantonio at the University of Richmond, in Virginia. “To ignore historians suggests that the actors involved are intent on privileging a version of the past that might fit a particular set of interests that might or might not align with history.”

Tom Tillison

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