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“Help Me Understand”

01/23/2015 8:35 AM by

With the Mayor’s proposed Shockoe development still making news, Marc Cheatham has posted up a nice piece on the debate on his Cheats Movement blog:

I struggle, and have struggled a long time with who is really winning this debate and what does winning mean. I just saw the video […] from the National Trust for Historic Preservation and I must say that the 3 minutes I spent watching the video did more to get me critically thinking about the history of Shockoe than any Lupita tweet. I’ve always wondered in regards to the multitude of opportunities in Shockoe Bottom, how do we as a community respect our ancestors, heritage, and history and yet prepare, plan, and take action for a better present and future. How does that happen? I don’t believe that can truly happen without mutual respect, meaningful dialogue, and compromise, on all sides.

[…]

So, help me understand, if stadium/development naysayers “win or get their way” what does that look like? Does that mean nothing happens in Shockoe Bottom? Am I stuck with a few decent eating spots and a few more “questionable” night clubs? And that does beg the question, where were all the protests about our sacred ground of Shockoe Bottom when they were building all those “sweet” clubs just a few blocks away from the Lumpkin’s Jail site? If status quo is acceptable, who’s really winning? Are our ancestors currently winning?

That doesn’t mean I need a baseball stadium in Shockoe Bottom. I love baseball on the Boulevard. I’ve gone for years and will continue to go if it remains there. Where does that leave Shockoe? Who wins if baseball stays on the Boulevard?


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