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Editorial: The Healing Begins

This statue is a symbol of oppression, and if it’s a symbol, it’s an idol, and if it’s an idol, I as a Christian am convinced that the idols must be torn down.

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This statue is a symbol of oppression, and if it’s a symbol, it’s an idol, and if it’s an idol, I as a Christian am convinced that the idols must be torn down.

These words were spoken by Reverend Rob W Lee, great-great-nephew of Confederate General Robert E Lee. His words carry weight with the family name. And with any family requests, any arguments afterwards are null and void.

With convincing words, the Reverend Lee set the course for healing. Along with Governor Northam’s order, motions were set to remove the Lee Monument. The next day, all votes from City Council were secured to remove all the Confederate Monuments per Mayor Stoney’s declaration.

It hasn’t been 2 weeks since George Floyd was murdered by police and the world feels different. Demonstrations and protests were met with violent resistance. Looting and destruction forced many businesses around the country to board their windows. Richmond was no different. Peaceful demonstrators were met with tear gas and pepper spray at the Lee and JEB Stuart monuments.

Love does not begin and end the way we seem to think it does. Love is a battle, love is a war; love is a growing up
-James Baldwin

Finally, I had to chance to go see the Lee Statue for myself Friday afternoon. I was not able to join in the demonstrations for various reasons (we’re still in a pandemic) but felt the need to go see it with my own eyes and lens. Admittedly, there was some anxiety parking at a location that had experienced so much turmoil just a few days ago. As I walked across Monument, I heard folk tell a couple on a porch “I love y’all!” and all of sudden the trepidation melted. It felt like walking into a cathedral.

Acoustic guitar played notes over the air as the circle was neared. Crossing the circle, I was struck by the image of black mothers walking their children along and up the monument. Tents were set up with sealed bottles of water and cheerful people to give them out along with smiles and grace. Folk sat in lawn chairs soaking up the sun and moment while others ambled around, taking pictures. It felt… euphoric. It felt like a place where many can come together to gain peace

The removal of the statues will take time but it is a huge step.

Instead of an avenue of division, Monument Avenue can be a place where people come together. Instead of discord; harmony. Instead of scars; healing. Instead of the past; the future Instead of the past; love.

Once this pandemic is over, Monument Avenue will become a place where peace is exchanged, where bread is broken, where souls can be healed.

Between Boulevard and Belvidere on Monument, everyone is welcome into the sanctuary to join in on a future well worth embracing.

God didn’t make anybody to be a second-class citizen. Of this country, or the human family. I believe it because I believe that’s what the scripture teaches. And that is clearly what Jesus teaches. He says come into me all of you. He didn’t limit love. The dude, he got it.
– Presiding Episcopal Bishop Michael Curry

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Is a riddle, wrapped in an enigma, wrapped in Padow's bacon.

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Richmond Home Show is Back Starting Today

Richmond Home Show give their top 5 reasons you should swing on by.

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The Richmond Home Show, presented by Herman W. Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling, returns to the Richmond Raceway Complex October 22-24, 2021 (richmondhomeshow.com)! As we approach a new year, and with many spending more time in their home, now is the perfect time to give your home a refresh or tackle your next home improvement project. And the Richmond Home Show presents the ideal venue to connect with knowledgeable local home remodeling, design, and construction professionals who can help you get started.

Here are the top five reasons to attend the 2021 Richmond Home Show:

1. RVA’s hot housing market! High demand. Bidding wars. Soaring prices. The U.S. housing market is on fire, and metro Richmond is no exception, with Forbes naming it one of its “Top Housing Markets to Watch In 2021.” Now that you’ve bought a new-to-you home, it’s time to give it the upgrade it needs, customized and reimagined, with the help of local home improvement experts who can assist you now.

2. Home improvement is surging. The pandemic has accelerated this trend as more people spend time at home and have extra time – and the need – to start a home-related project. According to Porch.com, 76% of U.S. homeowners have engaged in at least one home improvement project since the start of pandemic. Talk one-on-one with Richmond Home Show pros who can help you get the process rolling!

3. Explore new home trends. Looking to create a multi-functional living area? Create a work-from-home sanctuary? A virtual learning space in your unfinished attic? Need a new deck for your outdoor oasis? Want to increase your home’s energy efficiency? From heating + cooling, garden + landscape, and kitchen + bath to flooring, cabinetry, and everything in between, home improvement specialists will be on hand with ideas, inspiration, and solutions for your current and future home wants and needs.

4. Ask local pros! Your projects – our experts. Having access to real-time, in-person advice from Richmond-area home experts is as important as ever as more people switch homes, work from home, or find home/building materials in short supply. Get help navigating the challenges the current home improvement market presents – bring your questions and floor plans and get answers on the spot.

5. Visit a one-stop showroom. Discuss your project needs with an array of trusted builders and designers, one-on-one, in one place. Among the local exhibitors who’ll be there to help you realize your home’s full potential: CJ’s Garage Doors (Amelia, Va.), Kitchen Doctors (Midlothian), Milligan Custom Cabinetry (Charlotte County), Herman W. Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling (Ashland), Atlantic House Plans (Chesterfield), Colonial Floors of VA, Deck Creations (Midlothian), EMPWR Solar (RVA), Virginia Railing & Gates, Thompson Creek Window Company (Ashland), Mr. Fix It (Ashland), and MANY, MANY more!

2020 was the year when we all became homebodies, living under stay-at-home orders due to the pandemic. Our home was not only where we lived and slept, it’s where we worked and played – our homes became our gym, school, office, bar, theater, playground, and more. Even as we begin to emerge from the pandemic, home is still our source of comfort and respite. Join us at the Richmond Home Show, a one-stop marketplace where homeowners can get answers to their home improvement questions – it’s all happening October 22-24 at the Raceway Complex.

NOTE ON COVID SAFETY: The Richmond Home Show abides by all local, state, and CDC guidelines for mitigating and preventing the spread of COVID-19. Guest wellness protocols will be in place at the venue, with handwashing and/or hand sanitizer stations at restrooms and entrances of the exhibition halls. Masks are required of all staff and patrons when inside buildings unless eating or drinking. Social distancing is also encouraged, with onsite signage to remind guests. Visit the show website for the most up-to-date guidelines.

ABOUT THE RICHMOND HOME SHOW

The Richmond Home Show is presented by Herman W. Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling and will take place at the Richmond Raceway Complex October 22-24, 2021, featuring an array of local home improvement, landscaping, and gardening experts all under one roof. Discover the latest in home design, remodeling, renovation, and improvement, meet local specialists and designers, and shop, compare, and save with our trusted exhibitors! On the web at richmondhomeshow.com and Facebook at facebook.com/RichmondHomeShows.

SHOW DATES + HOURS
Friday, October 22, 2021, 11AM – 8PM
Saturday, October 23, 2021, 10AM – 7PM
Sunday, October 24, 2021, 10AM – 5PM

ADMISSION
Adults (at the door): $8.00
Adults (online): $6.00
Children Ages 12 & Under: FREE

SPECIAL DAYS
• Seniors (60+) get FREE admission Friday, October 22 only with I.D. (available at box office only).
• HERO DAY is Sunday, October 24, when all active and retired military, fire and police personnel get into the show FREE! To receive a complimentary admission, simply show your valid I.D. at the Box Office.

LOCATION
Richmond Raceway Complex, 600 E Laburnum Ave, Richmond, VA 23222 (FREE PARKING!)

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Street Closures Saturday Near VCU for President Barack Obama and Terry McAuliffe Rally

Closures will start Saturday morning at 6 AM and last until 6 PM.

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Several street closures and no parking areas will be in place for the campaign event involving former President Barack Obama and Terry McAuliffe at VCU’s campus.

The rally is at the Compass area of the campus and starts at noon on Oct. 23. However, the street closures and parking restrictions will be in place before the event.

The following streets will have no parking areas from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Saturday:

  • 1000 block of Grove Avenue between North Harrison and North Linden streets;
  • 900 block of Park Avenue between North Harrison and North Linden streets;
  • 00 block of North Harrison Street between Park Avenue and West Main Street;
  • 00 block of South Harrison Street between West Main and West Cary streets;
  • 800 and 900 blocks of West Franklin Street between North Harrison and North Laurel streets
  • Cathedral, North Cathedral and South Cathedral Place.

The following roads will be closed from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Saturday:

  • 900 block of Park Avenue
  • 1000 block of Grove Avenue
  • Cathedral, North Cathedral and South Cathedral Place
  • 100 block of North Linden Street

Additionally, VCU announced these building closures and warned students and staff to remove any bikes located on the Compass.

  • James Branch Cabell Library (901 Park Ave.) will be closed prior to and during the event on Saturday. The building will be open afterwards from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., alternative study spaces have been reserved on the first floor of the Academic Learning Commons (MCALC). Students should enter the building through the entrance on 1000 Floyd Ave. Cabell Starbucks will be closed on Oct. 23.
  • Hibbs Hall will be closed and events have been relocated to alternate locations.
  • Shafer Court Dining Center and Market 810 (810 Cathedral Pl.) will be closed on Oct. 23. As an alternative, VCU Dine will extend the hours for AVO Kitchen (355 W. Cary Street) from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Subscribers to VCU’s West Main Street Parking Deck (801 W. Main St.) and West Cary Street Parking Deck (1201 W. Cary St.) will be able to access the decks. On Oct. 23, these decks will have online and on-site payment options in connection with the campaign event.

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Patriot Front Deface Arthur Ashe Mural

The mural was part of the U.N.I.T.Y. program to design street art in Richmond and completed in 2017.

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Beyond the photos above that were submitted anonymously, there is more graffiti throughout the tunnel.

The mural was part of the U.N.I.T.Y. program to design street art in Richmond.

From a Richmond.com article shortly after the mural was completed in the summer of 2017.

“We wanted to come to Battery Park because the tunnel was such an eyesore and it was honestly the perfect formula for what U.N.I.T.Y. Street stands for,” said Hamilton Glass, one of the five U.N.I.T.Y. artists. “Doing projects in communities where we can highlight the history of the community.”

Thornhill, who’s from Jackson Ward, added: “The city’s changing, the world is changing, and unfortunately we are forgetting some of the heroes and she-roes that came through the area.”

A few photos of the undamaged mural.

Photo Credit: Friends of Battery Park

Photo Credit: Friend of Battery Park

Photo Credit: Richmond Free Press

 

For those not familiar with the Patriot Front, read this summary from the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Patriot Front is an image-obsessed organization that rehabilitated the explicitly fascist agenda of Vanguard America with garish patriotism. Patriot Front focuses on theatrical rhetoric and activism that can be easily distributed as propaganda for its chapters across the country.

In its own words

“The time of the Republic has passed in America as the system grows too weak to perform its duty. … The damage done to this nation and its people will not be fixed if every issue requires the approval and blessing from the dysfunctional American democratic system. Democracy has failed in this once great nation.”

— Patriot Front manifesto.

Patriot Front (PF) is a white nationalist hate group that formed in the aftermath of the deadly “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, of August 12, 2017. The organization broke off from Vanguard America (VA), a neo-Nazi group that participated in the chaotic demonstration. PF’s founder, Thomas Rousseau, led VA members during “Unite the Right,” including James Alex Fields, Jr., the young man accused of murdering anti-racist protester Heather Heyer after fatally driving his vehicle into a crowd of protesters.

Rousseau and his loyalists broke away from VA after a months-long feud with VA’s leader Dillon Irizarry.

Update 10/21:

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