|Jap Lane In Orange County Is Getting A New Name
Reported by Kara Stevens
December 1, 2004 - 6:52PM
The Orange County Judge says his county will follow the lead of Jefferson County and change the name of Jap Lane.
Jap Road in Jefferson County was renamed several months ago because some people find the use of the word "Jap" to be offensive.
People living on Jap Lane have mixed emotions about the change.
Judge Thibodeaux expects the name to be changed in January.
No word yet on what the new name will be.
"A lot of us have lived on this road for years and it's our history and it's like they're wanting to change our history."-Penny LeLeux, Lives On Jap Lane
PENNY LELEUX'S FAMILY MOVED TO THIS AREA IN ORANGE COUNTY IN THE 1850s.
MANY OF HER RELATIVES STILL LIVE ON THIS STREET.. JAP LANE.
"My sister lived there, my mother lived there, my grandomother lived there, we've got seven generations living on this road right now."-Penny LeLeux, Lives On Jap Lane
LELEUX IS LIKE MANY PEOPLE WHO LIVE ON JAP LANE WHO DON'T WANT THE NAME OF THEIR STREET CHANGED.
LELEUX SAYS IT'S NAMED IN HONOR OF A FAMILY THAT LIVED NEAR HERE MORE THAN A HUNDRED YEARS AGO.
BUT SOME PEOPLE DON'T SEE IT THAT WAY.
"It's because of the Japanese rice farmers that lived here. I've known that my whole life and I was always proud of that fact. It wasn't ever anything derogitory, in fact, I think it was named Jap Lane before the word Jap became derogitory."-Penny Lane, Lives On Jap Lane
LELEUX ECHOS THE FEELINGS OF MANY PEOPLE WHO LIVE ON BOONDOCKS ROAD IN JEFFERSON COUNTY.. FORMERLY NAMED JAP ROAD.
THE STREET RECEIVED NATIONAL ATTENTION A FEW MONTHS AGO BECAUSE SOME PEOPLE SAY THE NAME JAP IS A RACIAL SLUR.
THE STREET'S NAME WAS CHANGED.
ORANGE COUNTY OFFICIALS SAY JAP LANE WILL ALSO.. BY EARLY NEXT YEAR.
"What we politically correct 20, 30 years ago may not be so now so we definitly need to deal with it."-Orange County Judge Carl Tibodeaux
"Everyone else is coming in and telling us what to do and I think I saw a comment one time that it's like someboday saying they don't like the color of your house, that you have to change the color of your house. It's ridiculous. It's just political correctness gone haywire."-Penny LeLeux, Lives On Jap Lane
LELEUX SAYS THE NAME 'JAP LANE' WAS NEVER INTENDED TO OFFEND ANYONE.
SHE SAYS IT HONORS THE FAMILY THAT SETTLED THERE AND SHE HOPES PEOPLE REMEMBER THAT.