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Friday, December 2, 2016

Alamo Master Plan Would Ban Protesting in Alamo Plaza

Posted By on Fri, Dec 2, 2016 at 6:10 PM

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San Antonio may be losing one of its go-to protesting locations with the pending Alamo redesign. In a Wednesday city council meeting, representatives involved in the Alamo Master Plan outlined their in-depth strategy to "reestablish dignity and reverence" in the area surrounding the Alamo.

A large part of this plan involved getting rid of the stuff currently cluttering the plaza and surrounding streets. Food vendors, tourist shops, parades, gaudy carriage rides, and Fiesta events would be kaput. Also protests.

Whether it's pro-gun, anti-gun, anti-Trump, pro-immigrant rights, anti-UNESCO, anti-pipeline, pro-choice or anti-abortion — Alamo Plaza has always been home base for San Antonio protests. But according to the master planners, these would insult the dignity of this historic site.

In the meeting, Alamo Management Committee chairman Gene Powell compared the Alamo to other famous national battlefields, like Gettysburg, Valley Forge and Vicksburg. These sites are sacred and revered, said Powell, and asked: "Shouldn't the Alamo get the same respect?"

But protests aren't banned at any of the locations Powell listed. Earlier this year, hundreds of protesters in Civil War-era clothing flocked to both the Gettysburg and Vicksburg battlefields to protest a ban on the Confederate flag. In 2013, a group of runners protested the government shutdown at Valley Forge.

Plus, not one of these locations is in the center of a major American city.

This is the first formal presentation of detailed master plan designs. Wednesday's presenters told city council that they still have 40 percent of the plan to flesh out — which they'll unveil to the public sometime next year.

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