HOC commissioners have stonewalled the public over the last year, claiming they could not speak on the matter, due to pending Westbard sector plan litigation. The judge has ruled in that case (although residents plan to appeal the ruling), which was not related to the cemetery issue, and Macedonia Baptist Church was not even a party to the lawsuit.
Protesters now want commissioners to weigh in on how they plan to handle the matter of the desecrated cemetery, and the potential construction of a garage atop the graves, which HOC had threatened to build until tabling their plans under fire last fall. Macedonia Baptist Church has also requested permission to allow cadaver dogs onto the Westwood Tower property to locate grave sites, a request that has not yet been acted on by HOC.
Ultimately, the key question is, how will the cemetery and associated former River Road black community be memorialized, and how will the current desecrated state of the cemetery be addressed. The church and descendant community, and residents who support them, have asked that a museum be constructed on the site.
Wednesday's protest will take place at HOC headquarters, which is located 10400 Detrick Avenue in Kensington.
Participants in the protest should bring signs to hold. Suggested messages include:
MEMORIALIZE MOSES CEMETERY
WE SAY NO TO THE STATUS QUO
DON'T PARK ON ME, HOC (my personal favorite)
BLACK LIVES MATTER IN LIFE AND IN DEATH
BLACK ANCESTORS MATTER
Be forewarned that parking is very limited, as all of the parking lots are hogged by HOC, despite all we the taxpayers contribute to the HOC. There are some street parking spaces, and the surrounding residential neighborhood has permit parking restrictions. For that reason, carpool if you can.