Monday, December 14, 2009
Losing Public Spaces
Artist protester in Venice Beach, Calif.
The legal counsel for The City of St. Augustine feels that they can skirt the legalities of common public space by simply dubbing the public walkways, "proprietary city facilities". City Attorney Ron Brown will be proposing a resolution to do this at tonight's 5 pm commission meeting. The large amount of sidewalks and paths all around the Visitor Information Center and the Parking Garage will no longer be a public forum if this passes. Keep your city sidewalks, and parks public, or lose them. You St. Augustinians must decide or let complacency rule as tends to be the case here.
The resolution, if approved, will establish that such areas are not a public forum therefore vending activities should be banned. We strongly disagree in part and say that this promenade is a perfect example of public space for free speech. That said, it is clear that City Attorney Ron Brown is confused about what constitutes "free speech". Merchandising of non first amendment goods is NOT protected as a right of the citizens. ............Here is our message ........Do what you will with the flea market vendors....... do not lump the visual artists into that group. *
* Essentially , only one of our Art in The Market artists uses this area for display.
Posted by Karl at 1:16 AM