The Washington Times is reporting that the Riviera Beach City Council will vote shortly on the Mayor Thomas Masters laudable proposal to rename Old Dixie Highway after President Obama.
However, his firey grandstanding to his fellow commissioners undermines any chances to have a real debate on the issue to work through any reasonable concerns commissioners or the public may have. Such concerns could include costs to local businesses and homeowners changing their address, as well as confusion to drivers from the name of the road changing back and forth.
“Each member will vote Yay or Nay to rid this city of a street name that still invokes memories of racism and slavery in the Old South” said Mayor Masters to WPTV Palm Beach , essentially framing the debate opposition as bigoted racists.
Its improper for a elected official to impugn the motives of his colleagues, and could possibly lead to voters feeling disenfranchised.
In neighboring Broward County, the City of West Park renamed SW 40th Street “Barack Obama Blvd.” shortly after he was elected in 2008.