A specially appointed city panel has recommended that 39th Avenue be renamed after farm worker civil rights activist Cesar Chavez. After last year's failed attempt to rename Interstate Avenue after the founder of United Farm Workers of America, supporters were undaunted. Last year's debate created a bitter atmosphere between activists and many residents and businesses along Interstate. Supporters of the street renaming had also set their sites on Grand Avenue and Broadway Avenue, which the panel concluded were historically significant and could not be changed.
The panel will be presenting its recommendations to the planning commission during next Tuesday's meeting. After the planning commission comes to a decision, they will make a recommendation for city council.
Reactions to the proposal have drawn a vast majority of negative and sarcastic complaints on such news blogs as oregonlive.com and kgw.com, some bordering on the racist, while others make reasonable arguments for other honors or monuments.
On the Oregonians blog, "overlookjewl" writes "Darn, I was hoping for Broadway so the West side of the city could engage in some Pc Bullsh*t. C. Chavez is rolling in his grave for such a dishonor of intent."
"leo1234" writes "Renaming Portland streets is a stupid idea. It should not be so easily controlled by a "panel" and the City Council. Bill Naito was no saint in the 1970s - 90s... why did he get a street?"
Over at kgw.com "DeekBender" says "I respect the work that Chavez accomplished, but renaming a street for him here is a terrible idea. Chavez was born near Yuma. This makes as much sense as a bunch of scientists trying to rename some major street there as " Linus Pauling Ave", even though Pauling was born and raised in Oregon." And "wakeup4" writes "We do not need a street or anything else named after Chavez. What good did he ever do for Portland or Oregon.(sic) What he did sure wasn't good for the State."