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Government, Politics & Issues

Parson Tells Trump He Won't Rename St. Louis

The statue of King Louis IX, the namesake of the city of St. Louis, has stood atop Art Hill in Forest Park since 1906. [6/29/20]
Colin Faulkingham | Wikimedia Commons

During a roundtable discussion about reopening schools across the nation on Tuesday, President Donald Trump asked Missouri Gov. Mike Parson about St. Louis.

"For our state, people appreciate it, Mr. President and First Lady, for where we are headed to this country, we went through hard times before and we will continue to get through hard times and we will be better for it and we will be stronger," Parson said.

“And you won't be changing the name St. Louis, will you?” Trump asked.

Parson replied and chuckled, “No, we won’t.”

“Thank you, that’s very important,” Trump said with a smile.

Activists have said King Louis IX doesn't fall in line with modern values and that he was specifically problematic when it comes to his views on Jewish and Muslim religions.

"To many people of Jewish heritage, he is known as someone who persecuted the Jewish people of France, confiscated and burned the Talmud, and 665 years before Adolf Hitler became chancellor of Germany he required Jewish people to wear an identification badge in public," architectural historian Michael Allen with Washington University told 5 On Your Side in June.

As of July 7, nearly 1,000 have signed a petition to get the name of St. Louis changed.

Ashley Cole is a reporter at 5 On Your Side, a reporting partner of St. Louis Public Radio.

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