Statement from Commissioner Gigi Simmons

Press release from City of Gainesville


The inequities and institutional practices and policies of racism that continue to exist, plague the very core of our basic human rights, justice, freedoms, and liberties. It is incumbent upon all of us to eradicate racism, biases, and a systemic culture that perpetuates privilege and inequality. It is time to do away with the unseen, but ever-present, practices and policies that continue to handicap and stifle the growth of the African American community.  We must not and cannot continue down a path that marginalizes our black brothers and sisters. The plight for equality and freedom in this country has left cries gone unheard for far too long. Our hope has been shackled to the empty promise that all men are created equal, yet equality has remained elusive for generations. We can no longer tolerate the injustice that men and women of color continue to face. We must work together in demanding and seeking meaningful change. – Commissioner Gigi Simmons

The opinions expressed by letter or opinion writers are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of AlachuaChronicle.com.

  • Gigi didn’t go far enough, she needs to add: That all CRA money should be re-distributed
    to our brown & black sisters and brothers in the form of a monthly check and that we need to come up with a new city slogan
    that’s more inclusive to the African American community
    and the BLM movement. The commission should make funds available for a
    George Floyd statue and place it Downtown so we never forget. We need to
    Change the name of University Ave to George Floyd Memorial Ave and defund GPD… the department of doing
    Should get on this ASAP.

    • Only one thing will work. Place a county charter amendment on the ballot and let the voters declare: “To make up for the Past, for the next 155 years all tax money collected from White People countywide shall only be spent east of Waldo Road and west of Hwy 301.” Problem solved. No more inequality.

  • In response to commissioner Simmons who appears to be thriving in the briar patch of racism:

    While a binge of political correctness has taken down many racist reminders of the past, we should consider re-naming Gainesville Florida for the same reason.

    Gainesville Florida named after General, Edmund P. Gaines

    One of his infamous post war actions, as a General of the Federal Army, was the destruction of a Negro Fort just over the state boundary in then Spanish held Florida.

    Filled with escaped slaves, the enclave was viewed as a challenge to the authority of nearby states and slavery.

    Residents included more than 270 people, many African Americans who had escaped slavery by running away.

    When the fort was taken they were captured, killed, or enslaved.


  • Let’s Drop the Racist heritage of Gainesville associated with the racist crimes of General Gaines. Perhaps “Floydville” would be agreeable.

  • One day, the city and the county residents will wake up and say that although “All Lives Matter,” we will realize that “our votes” do not.
    The City of Gainesville and Alachua County commissions will never stop reminding us of that.

    • That will definitely happen. And the O’Connell Center, too, possibly. Who knows which other buildings at UF are named after people who wouldn’t meet today’s standards?

      • Didn’t the C of G name a bus terminal after Corrine Brown? Since she became a felon, maybe rename it
        For George Floyd?

      • would the Governmental Pranksters rename J.J. Finley to George Floyd Elementary School?

  • Jesse Johnson Finley (November 18, 1812 – November 6, 1904) was a brigadier general in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. He was also a member of the United States House of Representatives from Florida, following the reconstruction era; the mayor of Memphis, Tennessee; an volunteer officer in the United States Army during the Second Seminole War; a member of the Arkansas Senate; a member of the Florida Senate; and a Circuit Court Judge in Florida

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