Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name title=
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name
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Source: Tribal Trust Foundation

The Tribal Trust Foundation (TTF), a Santa Barbara-based nonprofit with the mission of supporting the preservation of indigenous cultures and wisdom through philanthropy and education, has started a petition to rename Indio Muerto Street. This street name, which means "Dead Indian" has long faced criticism within the Santa Barbara community. The petition urges our local city council members to change this hurtful name, and demand recognition and acknowledgment of the Indigenous people of this land.

The street - which runs between the 101 to Milpas Street - allegedly came from Captain Salisbury Haley’s 1850 survey of Santa Barbara when a deceased Chumash man was found near the street. It is claimed that the street was named after the Wot (Chief) of the village who was killed and buried there.

TTF believes this name is disrespectful to Native Peoples and shows a disregard for the original inhabitants of this land. As part of its local efforts, TTF led a group of local allies in proposing that the Santa Barbara City Council and the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors adopt a resolution acknowledging the first Monday of October as Indigenous Peoples’ Day, replacing Columbus Day. After a year of campaigning, a Declaration of Indigenous Peoples’ Day by the Mayor of SB was implemented, which gained the support of the local Chumash bands including representatives of the SYBCI, the Coastal and the Barbareno.

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Minibeast Jul 19, 2020 06:02 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

I'm with the Edhat commenter who said The Santa Barbara Mission is next to go. And La Purisima Mission. Why not all the Old Missions? Doesn't the Tribal Trust Foundation find those edifices offensive in the extreme? Don't forget there is a collection of Chumash artifacts at The Museum of Natural History. There must be someone who finds this offensive and disrespectful. Is Alameda Padre Serra next on the list to be renamed? Should we pull down all the sandstone walls that were erected using Chumash as slave labor? What about the historic dam and aqueduct system at the Botanic Gardens? That dam was constructed via use of "neophyte" Chumash labor. Is that all going to be dismantled now, too? According to Santa Barbara history, Indio Muerto was so named because a "deceased aborigine" was found in that location. Some say it might have been a Chumash chief (Wot). Do we even know how long that body had been there before the survey team of that area uncovered it? Did the man die of natural causes, perhaps even before Spaniards and The White Man arrived on the scene? "Indio Muerto" is a dramatic, colorful rendition of that part of our Santa Barbara history. Milpas refers to maize fields and/or vegetable plots. I'm willing to bet at least some Chumash were conscripted to work those fields. Shall we petition to rename Milpas St. now, too? Where does this officiousness end?

Djmachineart Jul 19, 2020 06:23 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

“Dead Indian” is dramatic and colorful? It must be nice to live in your racist delusional world. There’s a big difference between renaming an offensively named street and destroying all of the missions, which will not happen. I love how people like you have to plant fear in people to defend your racism and to keep things like “the good old days.”

Chip of SB Jul 19, 2020 08:46 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

Historically, the definition of racism had a lot to do with racial discrimination. Times change and words evolve. In 2020, it seems a racist is defined as someone who engages in independent minded and non-conforming thinking. The word has been devalued like a Zimbabwe dollar.

a-1595208426 Jul 19, 2020 06:27 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

Not really clear what is per se offensive about the name. Don't 'indians' die? Are we not to notice? At worst it is awkward. If it gets renamed let's do so without the pejoratives and worse.

ZeroHawk Jul 20, 2020 08:54 AM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

@426 DING DING DING....WINNER! Yes it's a bit over the top...i think people need to find some better hobbies. we are just nit picking at every thing right now and this isn't change, this is just a bunch of bored people with too much time on their hands and thinking....way over thinking things. Indio muerto isn't a bad name and my daughter is native american. doesn't seem to bother her or her mom's family....or any other native i personally know.

PitMix Jul 20, 2020 09:14 AM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

just as bad as the others, which includes you, I guess. nice that you acknowledge it. I guess you assume you have the only valid viewpoint here? You know what assuming does for you.

SandyS Jul 19, 2020 06:41 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

While it is a morbid name, given the time period it was named in, I always thought of it as a memorial to the deceased who was found there. It could have been named a bit less morbidly. Why not rename it to the name of the deceased, or his title, that was found there?

SandyS Jul 19, 2020 06:42 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

Meaning, this is they way people spoke during that time frame. They could have just not paid any tribute to the deceased but it seems they were attempting to, albeit in an awkward phrasing.

REX OF SB Jul 19, 2020 08:06 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

The Chumash have decided that the new name will be Hutash Street, named for the Chumash "earth mother." I understand this is pretty much set in stone. Other names may be suggested, but that's only a legal formality. The new name will be Hutash Street. Pretty much 100% guaranteed.

REX OF SB Jul 19, 2020 11:10 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

As much as I am against this knee-jerk renaming of anything the snowflakes find offensive, I will acknowledge that Indio Muerto is blatantly offensive, and I'm surprised that no one's made a real issue of it until now. I came across the following sentiment in some other discussion of the matter, and it puts it into perspective: imagine that at some point, someone found a dead rabbi at a certain site, and that site was then named Dead Jew Street. Not so "colorful," is it? I have no problem with the already signed, sealed and delivered Hutash Street.

Bird Jul 20, 2020 12:33 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

Rex, I think there was a major effort about 20 years ago to change the name, with people speaking to the council in a full council chambers and the Council voted against it. Same place, same issue, different times now.

Ksen'_Sku'_Mu' Jul 21, 2020 06:38 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

taking just the name on face value would offend anyone. But the original folks who did the street naming did so with very specific intent. That intent which is lost on you and others who do not wish to know what these council members where trying to say. If you live in Santa Barbara it is so important to learn all you can about the history so you have context to it all. It is like no other area in California, a lot more than beautiful beaches and rich and poor folks.

manicmom Jul 20, 2020 07:08 AM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

This effected my grandmothers house in Woodland Hills. On average it cost the city $2,800 per mile of a busy blvd to update city maps, notifying emergency services, changing street signs, notifying mapping companies, notify USPS/shipping companies, legal documents, etc. Each resident was required to update everything themselves, mail, work payroll, insurance, bank, property title, notify social security, etc. Cost my grandmother about $600 mailing copies to dozens of companies. When we sold the home escrow got held up due to reports having conflicting streets names. The local hazard inspector wrote the old street name. They probably will change a few streets, but we know the city has a huge deficit and can't afford too many of these on their dime.

PitMix Jul 20, 2020 07:14 AM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

At least this was better than the other Edhat poster that said it cost each resident $20K to change all of their legal documents in reference to San Andres. These sound like more reliable numbers. Maybe the trust can provide funds for the residents to make these changes if they feel it is important.

sbtraveler Jul 20, 2020 07:38 AM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

If we are going to change street names, do we drop De La Guerra Street, Orena, Carrillo, Castillo, Alameda Padre Serra, and a host of other references to Spanish Californian history? What about changing the name of Wilson School--presumably named for Woodrow Wilson who has been criticized for his racist policies, particularly in the US armed forces? I think many of us have too much time on our hands.

REX OF SB Jul 20, 2020 04:27 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

SBTRAVELER: Wilson School closed in 1979, due to declining enrollment. But don't discount renaming Roosevelt School—these days, both Roosevelts could be considered racists. In fact, I'll bet with a very little research, ANY SB elementary school named after a US president could probably not stand up to any kind of politically correct scrutiny.

sbtraveler Jul 20, 2020 08:31 AM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

To quote Rodney King, "Can't we all just get along?" Santa Barbara's history is a long and interesting one; it has been punctuated by various natural disasters like the 1925 earthquake and by conquest(Spanish) both of which had profound impacts on our community. I would submit that those of us with a sense of history are richer for the experience.

gizmo1 Jul 20, 2020 08:53 AM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

Why not name it MacKenzie St, after George Mackenzie ex City Parks Director -who donated his nursery property to the city(Mackenzie Park) no one has ever acknowledged the nice things he had done for the City of SB (including his wife Charlene)

SoCalMommy Jul 20, 2020 09:53 AM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

I'm highly offended by literally everything. I demand everything be renamed to my liking. I will not rest until all the things are changed. Where is my justice?! I demand justice!!

PitMix Jul 20, 2020 12:16 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

Get enough people behind you, and your justice can be had. Good luck with that. Enough people are behind current efforts to make things better, although you do not appear to be one of them.

Rinconer Jul 20, 2020 09:59 AM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

The Chumash lived here for 10,000 years, until 19th century European colonial genocide, even though they had saved the town from Bouchard’s pirates in 1818 who had already destroyed Monterey. The time to honor genocide has past.

a-1595273838 Jul 20, 2020 12:37 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

Rather than a bunch of white people getting their panties in a bunch, I'd ask the local Chumash population. If they find it offensive, change it. If they are fine with it, the let it remain. Go straight to the offended party.

OWLworks Jul 20, 2020 01:54 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

Enough! The descendants need to be involved as well as other City interest groups. This is a cost process-- one not justified by current budget pressures, and the ignoring of anecdotal history- remember Salem? Horrible city histories can attest to one sided views--extreme in nature. Look North west? Changing the names of street will not make this any less politically offensive to those of us who want to be respectfully correct, RC and not politically motivated PC/destructive. This is NOT supposed to be partisanship/ideology once elected. These are local elections.Bring State street back to a "living state" so one can make a living.

Ksen'_Sku'_Mu' Jul 20, 2020 03:13 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

Ok. So ive been hearing on various blogs and posts that the 'chumash' or the 'tribe' is advocating for this change.
Just so its clear, in this area there is not just one tribe, but rather independent groups and individuals.
In this article the SYBMI, coastal and barbareno chumash being used. This online petition is driven by the Tribal Trust Foundation (TTF).
First things first. This TTF is a bunch of caucasian women and one male. The male is art Cisneros and is a chumash descendant. Comes from the chumash village of Tipu' as so do i. But neither me or he can claim to speak for the chumash community as a whole and i know he does not. I do commend his efforts to find people in the industry to advocate for a cause and by the looks of the board that makes up this ttf they seem very successful and professional. But they do not appear to be native based on the discriptions they provide. But really hard to say.

As for SYBMI, ive seen the work they do and know they try not to be involved in undertakings on this side of the mountains. My guess is someone from the rez said they are ok with what this group is proposing.

This leaves the coastal and barbareno.
Who are the barbareno and coastal to the outside world of the chumash? well not quite sure...the barnareno chumash council used to have actual chumash descendants till they found out their leader wasnt chumash then broke off to form the barbareno band of chumash indians. They have actual chumash santa Barbara descendants.

As for the coastal i suppose that could mean a select few of the coastal band of chumash nation which was formed from the quabahi back in the late 70s. But they have over 2 thousand members not all are actually chumash by descent but rather added based on name associations in the 1998 -1999 by the then Tribal enrollment officer. Which is what lead to the director of indian health to expunge the cbcn in 2005 for no tribal blood records.
I am a cbcn member and pretty much a black sheep of the chumash community because i say what needs to be said regardless of the drama causes.
So its hard to gleam who of the chumash community has been brought in to this topic.

Im also a santa Barbara history buff and ive never heard of this native found here to be some chumash chief. The location and proximity to known and past recorded archaeological sites does not correlate to any known burial practices in this area. As a professional in cultural resources, the location of this area does not fit within any known burial practices of the chumash or recorded sites within a mile. Chumash are well known for buring their loved ones within close proximity to where they lived in order to honor and cherish them. Not off in some distant marshes. Which is what was there when haley surveyed the area.

I know the nighborhood very well,spent my highschool days living there. No this was not a chief or wot that was found here. Just a lost soul whose only memory is this reference.

I don't know who else is beind this cause, i just know the relative that is apart of this TTF group. But i would hope that if in deed actual lineal descendants like ernestine desoto, frank lemos are called to participate in this change they be brought forward with their blessings and recognition rather than a board of women who are well meaning but doesnt appear to be of chumash descent.

Humanitarian2003 Jul 20, 2020 04:17 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

The subjugation of Native American people is historically genocide. Native Americans had lived in balance with nature for thousands of years, and had changed their habitats into gardens which provided sustenance for their cultures. More Native Americans lived in a given area than the same given area in Europe, at the time of discovery of the Americas by Europeans. European-borne diseases decimated the populations of the Native Americans to the point where less than five percent survived. Europeans felt that Manifest Destiny was responsible for this, and proceeded to bring even more bloodshed and heartbreak to the Native Americans. This was and is pure genocide. It is time to honor Native American culture by promoting how Native Americans lived, and honoring their heritage and names. This cannot be done by glorifying the conquestors. Let's make a model village representing the Chumash lifestyle before Columbus. Let's teach our children of the Native American philosophies and seek to exemplify those values in our own lifestyle. Many of our problems would be solved if we decided to live in harmony with our environment and each other. Native Americans should be used as role models for the ideal lifestyle. Let's not glorify the people who attacked those cultures; let's remember the real values that can return us to a harmonious lifestyle.

Ksen'_Sku'_Mu' Jul 20, 2020 07:29 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

I must reply. So much of the post is factually incorrect. Hate to see bad information being spread.
It is a subjugation to Natives when you can only view natives dressed in traditional outfits from 500 years ago. It is disingenuous to the cultural advances in Chumash culture. Just like the people who dressed up ISHI in rabbit skins and then put him on display for all Europeans to gawk at.
Spanish Genocide in California– false. Genocide is “a deliberate killing of a large group of people”. Less than 200 Europeans came to California in 1776 to convert the natives to become Spanish but if we follow this concept of Spanish lead genocide it would mean that the Spanish instead “deliberately killed off large groups of people.” Logistically 200 Europeans killed off thousands of California natives all by themselves!!!! The Spanish who needed a work force did not deliberately kill its labor force. The actual account is many Californian Natives died mostly from foreign diseases which they had no immunity from. Did the Spanish have a CDC to notify the sick folks of what to watch out for and then just ignore it like we do currently today…no they did not. Yes, a few died from labor but not in the amounts or with any deliberate acts that would reach the level of Genocide.
Spain did carry out Genocide 250 years prior on the East coast of the continent in Hispanola back in 1492 when that Portuguese arrived and killed over 3 million Tianos during his reign. But by the time the Spanish made it to California they had several colonization defeats in the pueblos and constructed a new process of conversion that was charged to “convert” the Natives in a non-threatening manor to become Spanish citizens. Santa Barbara had only 39 soldados here. As if 39 guys could kill off 13 thousand Chumash all by themselves, they didn’t even have no more than 200 rounds of ammunition to survive on.

Manifest Destiny was also an American concept that rose to popularity in 1845, well after the Spanish and Europeans were out of the picture. It was promoted by john louis o'sullivan who was an American columnist who wrote about supporting the annexation of Texas.
People need to stop glorifying that Hollywood concept of what a Native is. Either that or go read a darn book for once. Speaking of reading, I read a post where someone was talking about not the Spanish carrying out genocide, but actually Americans! From 1849 to 1870 in just 21 years over 16 thousand California Indians were deliberately killed! Ask the Pomo about the 150 to 200 pomo natives that were killed in 1850.
The Spanish were the indirect cause of lives lost due to diseases that Natives had no immunity too but it was not deliberate. The killing carried out by Americans to California Indians was deliberate and meets the true definition of genocide.
The Americans also stole California Indian lands through the missing 18 treaties that were so conveniently lost for over 50 years and left thousands of California Indians landless. As it turns out the congress ordered them kept a secret. I am no fan of the Spanish….just tired of folks making up rhetoric and spreading the wrong history.

'goose Jul 20, 2020 08:43 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

This is NOT a new issue. About 30 years ago someone 'took offense' and approached the city to get the name changed. The suggestion for the "NEW name" was "Indio Vivo". It was opposed by a couple of interested businesses and the family of a homeowner who lived on the street. The MAIN ISSUE was NOT about insulting anyone, or being morbid about death, but the fact that that the name is an IMPORTANT part of THE HISTORY OF SANTA BARBARA. When Captain Haley was mapping out the streets and naming them, he HAD A REASON for the names! It is part of HISTORY and something that makes SANTA BARBARA the colorful and interesting place that it is.
IF you want, then be "Politically Correct" and don't offend anyone. RE Name all your streets with numbers and letters, like Lompoc, 1,2, 3, A. B,C,, etc.
IF you want to hang on to at least SOME of your rich history, KEEP the names as they are!

PitMix Jul 21, 2020 07:34 AM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

The historical argument is a tired one. Our society changes and evolves, eliminating slavery, giving women the vote, protecting more rights over time. The people arguing against this change don't see why it might be offensive to some people, and they hate being forced to change something they are comfortable with. If we had any other Dead _____ Streets, (insert your ethnicity in the blank), then maybe you could argue to keep this one. But we don't, for good reason.

Ksen'_Sku'_Mu' Jul 21, 2020 06:32 PM
Petition to Rename Offensive Santa Barbara Street Name

facts are important. Salisbury Haley did NOT name the streets. He was only contracted by the City to only Survey the roads. Do not mix this topic. It is very significant and deserves to be cited correctly.


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