Texas -Approves `Jap Lane' Name Changes
By Pacific Citizen Staff

   Orange County, Texas' "Jap Lane" road signs have finally been taken down.

   After a protracted battle with local. residents, Orange County workers removed the sign many considered to be racially insensitive last month.

   In its place, new names have been chosen by "Jap Lane" residents to reflect the character of the community. To replace the racial slur, they chose three names for different segments of the road: Duncanwoods Lane, Japanese Lane and Cajun Way.

   Orange County Commissioners approved the name changes during their July 5 commissioners court meeting.
   JACL Houston chapter member George Hirasaki told the Beaumont Enterprise that as a child growing up near "Jap Lane," racism was a common occurrence and the word "Jap" was often the weapon of choice. At the commissioners meeting, Hirasaki testified that his brother and sister suffered from racial slurs. John Dubose, Orange County Precinct 3 Commissioner gave Hirasaki two street signs: "Japanese Lane" and "Jap Lane," according to the Enterprise.

   Hirasaki along with many other JAs and civil rights organizations have been fighting for a name change for over a decade. Last year, civil rights groups successfully sued for a name change in neighboring Jefferson County, where last year "Jap Road " became "Boondocks Road."

   Dubose said he led the effort to rename "Jap Lane" in order to avoid a lawsuit and bad publicity.