April 14 and the Inter-Cultural Festival marked the continuation of VCU’s wanton spree of destruction of Monroe Park. By driving heavy trucks on roadways designed solely for foot traffic, they assure the disintegration of this historically sensitive area.

Every huge event that the University has perpetrated here over the years further degrades the fragile nature of one of the last places that Abraham Lincoln visited in Virginia shortly before his death. By bringing enormous hordes of visitors to the Park, they are, in fact, helping to erase any traces that might remain of his visit. The surprisingly tall canopy trees are but a reminder of a slower, more relaxed time in our history that VCU wants to erase and replace with modern brick-piles.

Be assured that they will not rest until they have acquired what they consider their campus quad, regardless of what anyone else might think. In the same manner that they acquired, house by house, in the surrounding neighborhoods, every property that stood in the way of their massive construction projects, so they intend to do to the only formal Park that this city owns.

It remains the only location that is perfect for planting ceremonial trees, having outdoor speeches by our local, state, and federal government officials, as well as protests by those who disagree with them and lots more.

It is a cool and restful place in the heat of summer, and a mild and sheltered location in the dead of winter. In the spring it has beautiful blossoms on it’s huge magnolia trees, and in fall, amazingly colorful leaves on the rest of it’s variety of older trees.

Please do not let this paragon of a Park be destroyed by the unscrupulous manipulations of an agency of the State grown over-large by preying upon the fears of an uneducated public. Indeed, do not do as Benedict Arnold did, when he retreated through this immediate vicinity, when the British chased him down Grove Avenue, the first time Richmond was burned. Stand and fight the faceless minions of mediocrity. Tell VCU that they can’t have this magnificent property and turn it into a grassy field which would be hot in the summer and frozen in winter.

Let them know that Richmond places some value upon the good things of a bygone era, because, as not everything new is good, neither is everything big good, and the University is nothing if not too big already.

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