Dem state representative in Mass seeks to remove sign honoring Civil War general because she doesn’t like his name

We are accustomed to local politicians demanding erasure of memorials to Confederate generals, but a feminist state legislator in Massachusetts wants to pull down a sign honoring a Union general -- solely because of his name.

Representative Michelle Dubois (need I specify that she is a Democrat?) tweeted out her disgust over a sign over an entrance to the State House (the state capitol, as it is known locally) adjacent to a statue of General “Fighting Joe” Hooker, who voluntarily came out of retirement to fight for the Union cause once the Civil War had begun. In other words, a man who put himself at risk to fight for the cause of the Union, and eventuate the destruction of slavery in this country.



The Boston media already have had a field day, with national conservative and libertarian media also taking notice.

At least (for now) she is not demanding destruction of the statue, but if the name bothers her so much, then it is hard to see how the statue could escape her ire, once she gets her way on the sign.

To me, the irony of the sign is heaven-sent. The Massachusetts State Legislature – officially called “The Massachusetts General Court” --  is not exactly known for its probity and incorruptibility. I spent almost two decades living in the “the commonwealth,” and cannot recall a single person expressing respect for that body. The novels of George Higgins are full of tales of the customary everyday corruption there. Howie Carr’s book The Brothers Bulger about the mob boss who was brother of the most powerful member of The Massachusetts General Court should relieve any doubt about the appropriateness of the legislators entering through a door for hookers.

But that irony aside, I wonder if Representative DuBois would be against honoring other people with the name Hooker? There are a fair number of them

Hooker is a moderately common surname in the United States. When the United States Census was taken in 2010, there were about 16,646 individuals with the last name "Hooker," ranking it number 2,185 for all surnames. Historically, the name has been most prevalent in the Southeast, especially in North Carolina. Hooker is least common in the northeastern states.

And there are people named Hooker all over the world.

Re all of these people to be relegated to anonymity, even if they accomplish historic feats?

Fortunately, the Hooker Chemical Company, founded by Elon Huntington Hooker, was acquired by Occidental Petroleum and renamed Occidental Chemical Corporation.

Otherwise, Rep. DuBois might campaign to have it banned from doing business with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Of course, as the responsible part for the Love Canal pollution disaster, it might already have incurred her wrath.