Oppose the Helms Federal Office Building
Update: the renaming bill has been stopped for now -- but we are hearings rumblings of more attempts to honor Helms on the way. Please sign our petition today so we can reach 10,000 signatures and stop this ill-advised idea for good. Thank you!
Whereas U.S. Congresswoman Renee Ellmers of North Carolina has introduced a bill to name the historic Century Post Office in Raleigh after the late NC Senator Jesse Helms…
We, the undersigned, urge Congress to reject this idea and to recognize that it is morally wrong to reward intolerance. As a long-time Senator of our North Carolina, Jesse Helms actively opposed civil rights, voting rights, disability rights, women's rights and gay rights. He attacked children receiving food stamps, fought against a federal holiday to commemorate Martin Luther King, Jr. and routinely engaged in political and editorial rhetoric that was divisive and rightly considered hate speech.
Some may say he was a product of his times, but the truth is that he remained a spokesperson for divisiveness and intolerance long after the times had changed around him.
To name a building after him would be a slap in the face to all North Carolinians, but particularly those who are African-American, women or gay. We refuse to endorse an act that would insult our family, friends, neighbors, co-workers and loved ones.
Therefore, we urge you to reject the idea that any building should be named after Jesse Helms, either now or in the future.