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Bruce Lee Elementary? Twitter weighs in on plan to rename Robert E. Lee schools

Renaming would save schools lots of money. And if they were named after Rush frontman Geddy Lee, it might lead to stratospheric levels of school spirit.

Bruce Lee Elementary? Twitter weighs in on plan to rename Robert E. Lee schools
[Photo: Brady-Handy Photograph Collection/Library of Congress]

A rose by any other name would probably smell just as sweet. However, if the rose were named after leather-faced thespian Tommy Lee Jones, who cares how it smells? I’m giving my wife a dozen Tommy Lee Joneses tonight because I love her.

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The old what’s-in-a-name question has new relevance this morning, with the Wall Street Journal reporting that the North East Independent School District in Texas wants to change the name of Robert E. Lee High School, because duh, but it is considering naming the school after a different Lee, to save money on the cost of new signage, sports uniforms, and all the rest. It’s the kind of news story that seems custom-designed to be lovingly embraced by Twitter for exactly 24 hours.

On the one hand, it’s actually a pretty good idea! It relegates the offensive specter of America’s dark past to the inside of history books rather than right there on the football field, and it offers the chance to get input from a variety of voices in choosing the One True Lee.

At the same time, it’s also a deeply silly idea. A Homer Simpson-y idea. “Uh, can’t we just name the school after somebody else with the same name?” Its practicality is obscured by how transparently it is a cost-effective ass-covering mission. Nobility on a budget.

In any case, once the bright-eyed Monday morning Twitterscape got a hold of this news, they immediately starting pitching their picks for famous Lees to replace the Confederate general.

They nominated a lot of movie people.

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Of course, there was also literary representation, in the form of comic book creators and canonized novelists.

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Speaking of Harper Lee, someone even thought of the perfect mascot.

Baseball players got in the mix as well.

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And who could resist throwing in some musicians, both obscure and otherwise.

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One multi-hyphenate artist got many votes.

Some less, uh, politically correct nominations surfaced as well.

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But mainly, everyone just wants to see Bruce Lee school become a thing.

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North East Independent School District in Texas, if you’re listening, and you obviously are: The people have spoken. It’s time to exit the field of Confederate battle and enter the dragon.

Did we miss any Lees that you’d want to see schools named after? Tweet at us.

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