CRYSTAL CITY, Va. -- Amazon’s new location in Crystal City has a highway running through it that's named after a white supremacist who led effort to keep slavery intact: Jefferson Davis Highway.
Will Amazon ask for the name to be changed?
To some visitors, it seems odd that Amazon will soon plant its second headquarters in a diverse bustling urban area, filled with all kinds of people, which also has a main highway named after a the president of the Confederacy.
“I just think it’s very odd that Jefferson Davis has a street in the Nation’s Capital. The nation that fought against the confederacy... Losers don’t get to have statues and streets," said Steve Harris who is visiting from California.
But then there’s that history argument you hear.
"I think it should stay...we can't deny our history," said a young man with agreement from several friends."
Local resident Adrienne Cadick disagrees, "You don’t want to name a street Hitler Street just because that was history."
Down the highway, the Alexandria City Council already voted to change the name of Jefferson Davis Highway to Richmond Highway. It takes effect January 1. They can do that because cities have different rules than counties. Crystal city is in Arlington County, which can't change the names of roadways. Only the state can do that.
So what does Amazon think? A spokesperson said that Amazon it’s not taking sides. She pointed to their diversity policy which says, "We are innovating in diversity, inclusion, and equality..."
"Then they’ve just taken a side. Arlington is incredibly diverse and very inclusive in the name does not reflect this city...I think they’ll be eager start changing your name I think Amazon will have an affect.”
State lawmakers who represent Arlington are planning to introduce legislation to change the name of Jefferson Davis Highway.