Brady Name - Should It Be Changed?
Today it's a name associated with one of Tulsa's most progressive parts of town, it is also however, linked to the most regressive part of Tulsa's history.
"My grandmother passed away last year," said James Johnson, holding back tears. His 105 year old grandmother survived what she called the Tulsa Massacre. He hasn't been in the arts district for 3 years because of the Brady name and it's association with intolerance and racial hatred. His example to drive home the point for change?
"Let's change Brick town to the Timothy McVeigh District. Can you imagine the uproar that that would bring to this state?," he asked.
Also at the meeting tonight.
"We want you to know that we are listening," said Robert Fleischman the head of the Brady Arts District Business Association.
"We wish to acknowledge that there is a history of a person which overshadows the character and the actions of us as organizations, individuals, and as a community," he said.
The district, of course, isn't the only place named after Brady, there's the neighborhood where he lived, and a historical plaque on his former house.
"Obviously if you look at the diversity of our family we obviously don't share the same values if what they said about his, about Mr. Brady was true," said Jim Kufdakis, the current owner of the property.
The Kufdakis family is part Greek, part Puerto Rican, all diversity. The name to them is history, something to be observed but not changed, not out of endorsement, but as a reminder of then versus now.
"I don't want what happened once to occur again and I worry that even by starting down this slippery slope of just changing the name here and there that we may forget the value of events that potentially happened," said Arthur Kufdakis.
"This is a different day, a different age, and that we should be looking towards the future not towards the past," said Jim Kufdakis.