HERE ARE A FEW COMMENTS, FROM TEXANS, READ TO CITY COUNCIL AT THE CTHI MEETINGS
January of 2018 we knew the majority of San Antonio City Councilmembers were not listening. At every one of the CTBI Meetings, the majority of City Councilmembers were playing games or texting on their phones. We even caught, and took pictures of, D5 San Antonio City Councilwoman Shirley Gonzales sleeping at 2 of the CTBI Meetings. We called her out on it, she denied it, but the photos/videos proved she was taking a "Santa Anna Siesta" during the CTBI Meetings. Other TITFF Members started bringing up the fact that Councilmembers were not listening to the people, they were more interested in their iPhones and iPads while constituents were addressing them. At this point TITFF Directors called a meeting to discuss a different tactic, because we weren't getting anywhere in the CTBI Meetings. We started scheduling meetings & meeting with Councilmembers one on one, to discuss the "Reimagine The Alamo Master Plan", but more importantly their plan to move the Alamo Cenotaph. It's important to note that D1 Councilman Roberto Trevino, D2 Councilman Cruz Shaw, D3 Councilwoman Rebecca J Viagran and D5 Councilwoman Shirley Gonzales refused to meet with members of TITFF . Other Councilmen were happy to meet with us, and 2 of the members of City Council (D9 John Courage, D10 Clayton Perry) told TITFF Directors/Members that we had won them over at the CTBI Meetings and they would vote "NO" on moving the Alamo Cenotaph. It was a small victory, but it gave us some encouragement to continue the fight. In 2018 TITFF Directors/Members attended a total of 89 Alamo Meetings (this includes CTBI Meetings, Alamo Trust Meetings, Alamo Endowment Board Meetings, Alamo Roadshow Meetings, Alamo Advisory Meetings, HDRC Meetings and others). It's important to point out that TITFF is the only organization that attending every single Alamo related meeting in 2018, other organizations attended some meetings, but TITFF never missed a single meeting. This is how important the Alamo and the Cenotaph is to us. TITFF Directors/Members have jobs, they have lives, but God bless every single one of them for showing up to represent the organization and our stance on the Alamo Cenotaph. #NotOneInch
Since D1 Councilman Roberto Trevino is the head of the Central Development Committee (which the Cenotaph sits in his district), and he heads up the Alamo Endowment Board, TITFF launched a recall effort in Jan 2018, to remove Trevino from office. We hoped that we could remove Trevino from office, which would give San Antonians an opportunity to elect someone who would stop the Alamo Cenotaph from being moved and most likely damaged. Not only that, but by recalling Trevino it would have sent a stern message to the rest of city council, possibly changing their minds to support the moving of the cenotaph. What we found, once we started the recall, was that the majority of citizens in Trevino's district were unhappy with the fact that Trevino had spent $68,000 tax payer dollars to paint a crosswalk rainbow, he spent $500,000 on a glorified port-o-potty in the Downtown area, he also used tax payer dollars to secure a location to build a monument to Salina (which looked like something from a junkyard), he spent all this money on these things yet many citizens in his district didn't have sidewalks or street lights in their neighborhoods. Another issue we found is there were pot holes knee deep in District 1, the citizens were tired of him misusing funds and they certainly were not happy to spend tax payer dollars moving the cenotaph while their neighborhood suffered and streets needed repairs. TITFF block walked and set up signing locations in D1, we got to talk to the people of D1 and they weren't happy with Trevino. The problem we ran into was man power. 4 TITFF Directors worked 60+ hours a week, about 8 members volunteered 2 or 3 hours a week, and that was all the help we received. Not one person from another organization came out to help with the recall effort. We had a chance to stop the Alamo Cenotaph from being moved, the people of D1 wanted Trevino gone for various reasons, but lack of volunteers hindered the effort and we lacked the desired amount of signatures to remove Trevino from office. Did we quit? Nope!
We started to see that we were getting nowhere with the San Antonio City Council, so we turned our attention to the State level. We still attended and spoke out at CTBI Meetings, but our focus was on the GLO race. In March 2018 TITFF hosted our annual "Remember The Alamo March", but this year we brought out every candidate for Texas General Land Office except for George P Bush. At the end of the march, we invited Davey Edwards, Andy Prior, Matt Pina, Rick Range and Jerry Patterson out to speak to Texans. Hundreds of Texans came out to pay their respects to our brave Alamo Defenders, who died for Texas, and to hear what each GLO candidate had to say about the "Reimagine The Alamo Plan". Every single GLO candidate said they would stop the Alamo Cenotaph from being moved, if they were elected. Unfortunately, not enough of Texans were paying attention. Between straight party ticket voting, Texans not paying attention, and the Bush name in the race, George P Bush won the primary. Later that year Matt Pina ran against George P Bush in the general election, yet again, Bush won the election and the Reimagine The Alamo Plan moved forward.
Unfortunately, not enough Texans were paying attention and this is what George P Bush, Mayor Ron Nirenberg and D1 Councilman Roberto Trevino were counting on. So throughout 2018 TITFF held an array of events/functions. In 2018 TITFF hosted numerous events at the Alamo Cenotaph, each with a minimum of 100 people in attendance. We participated in 3 parades across the state with our float themed "Protect Texas History". The Alamo was our float centerpiece, and at every parade we passed out literature about "Alamo Cenotaph". TITFF took home 1st place at one parade and 3rd place at another. TITFF hosted townhall style meetings in Amarillo, Houston, Waco, San Antonio, Dallas, Corpus Christi and El Paso, trying to educate Texans on what George P Bush and the City of San Antonio were going to do with the Alamo Cenotaph. TITFF worked at the Republican Convention, passing out information about the Reimagine The Alamo Plan, and helped pass plant 296 and 315( Plank 296 calls for the Alamo Cenotaph to not be moved & 315 had to do with protecting Texas Confederate Monuments)(2 of our TITFF Directors are Texas Delegates). George P Bush was booed at the convention, unfortunately not all politicians followed the plank passed by Texas Delegates. Last TITFF held our annual "Christmas At The Alamo" event, where we had Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus and elves hand out free toys and take free photos in front of the Alamo Christmas Tree. While parents & kids were waiting in line to get their pic with Santa & Mrs. Claus, TITFF Members were handing out pamphlets about the Reimagine The Alamo plan, the Alamo Cenotaph, and explaining to them that they most likely will never get to do this again if the Reimagine The Alamo plan is passed.
In 2018, TITFF attended the City of San Antonio's vote on the Alamo Cenotaph and the Reimagine The Alamo Plan. Before the vote took place Councilman Brockhouse walked up to TITFF Directors and informed them he was going to vote "YES" on the plan. During the vote Councilman Brockhouse looked towards TITFF, sitting in the audience, and told us, "You guys won, you stopped the city of San Antonio from moving the Cenotaph off of Market Street, we are only moving it 500 feet now, you guys won" (The first plan was to move the Alamo Cenotaph off of Market Street which is blocks away from the Alamo, kind of a dark quiet corner where the Alamo Defenders wouldn't be in the way of George P Bush's, D1 Councilman Roberto Trevino's, Alamo CEO Douglas McDonald's and Mayor Ron Nirenberg's new narrative for the Alamo). Not one person from TITFF took this as a victory. A full victory for us would be the Alamo Cenotaph repaired in place and left standing in the center of the Alamo Footprint. Although no one was aloud to speak at the meeting, TITFF's President Brandon B and TITFF's Research Director Keri stood up and spoke out on behalf of Texans, both were escorted out of city hall. The City Council voted 8-2 to pass the Reimagine The Alamo Plan and our fight to save the Alamo Cenotaph from being moved had stopped in San Antonio, we had lost a critical battle, but the war was far from over.
In 2019 TITFF camped out at the Capitol Building in Austin, Texas. We took our directors, members and on a few occasions supporters to the capitol to talk to Senators, House Members as well as Legislators, trying to garner support for our monument protection bill SB1663. This bill stated that any historical monument 40 years old or older COULD NOT BE REMOVED, and any monument 25 years old to 40 years old had to be voted on by the people of Texas in order to move or remove it. This was a great bill because it included and mentioned the Alamo Cenotaph in the bill as well as all Texas monuments, including Confederate monuments. TITFF had been working with a Senator since 2017 to get a Monument Protection Bill passed. In 2017 we were late getting to work on the bill, so when we started pushing for the bill, we were pushing to get the bill placed on the Special Session called by Governor Greg Abbott. Unfortunately our bill was not added to the Special Session, so we promised our members and supporters we would hit the ground running for the 2019 Legislative Session. TITFF spent months at the capitol, talking to Senators, House Members and even Legislators, trying to gather support for the bill. TITFF testified in 2 hearings, which our bill was passed, then we sat on the Senator Floor offering support to our Senator, who did a absolute great job on the Senate Floor pushing the bill. The bill passed the Senate and on we went to the House with only 1 week left in the 2019 Legislative Session. Texans from all over the state were emailing and calling their representatives asking them to support SB1663. Unfortunately, speaker Bonnen and Greg Abbott got to the leadership in the House and our bill was never allowed to be heard on the House Floor. This was sickening to TITFF, and like one of our Directors said, "This feels like a punch in the gut". At this point our options were very limited, but we did not give up.
At this point TITFF turned our attention to the 2019 Runoff Election for Mayor of San Antonio (between Ron Nirenberg and Greg Brockhouse), TITFF scheduled a sit down with Greg Brockhouse, in hopes we could convince him to stop the moving of the Alamo Cenotaph, if he was elected. You see the polls for the runoff election were close, we hoped if we could change Brockhouse's mind, it would give him enough support to win and give Texans fighting for the Alamo Cenotaph a win. At the meeting between TITFF and Councilman/Mayoral Candidate Brockhouse, he said, "If I become Mayor, I will disclose the location of the Travis Park Monument and will form a commission to put it back up. I support allowing the public to vote on the Alamo Cenotaph or any monument the city wants removed/moved, that is 40 years old or older". We asked Councilman Brockhouse if we could post the quote onto our Facebook page and he agreed. Unfortunately Candidate Greg Brockhouse didn't win the Runoff Election against Ron Nirenberg. It's important to point out that if Greg Brockhouse would have voted "NO" on the Reimagine The Alamo Plan, most likely he would have won the Runoff Election, and the Alamo Cenotaph would not be threatened to move.
In March 2019, TITFF was back at it again hosting our annual "Remember The Alamo March". At the event we brought out more Texans, like Dr. Alma Arredondo, George "El Conservador" Rodrigues, Lamar Henry, Bob Sanders, and many more, to speak to the crowd. Again Texans should up in large numbers, and our message could be heard all across Alamo Plaza. The march was a success, and even more Texans learned of the plan to move the Alamo Cenotaph.
In mid 2019, TITFF held another Town Hall meeting at the Waffle House in Amarillo, Tx. There we informed the public about the status of the Monument Protection Bill, the actions of some politicians, and our continued fight to save the Alamo Cenotaph. The meeting was standing room only and every Texan in attendance was angry. Most could not believe they had not heard about this plan to move the Alamo Cenotaph, others said they would be contacting their representative, and try to sway him to stop the Reimagine The Alamo Plan.
On Dec 4, 2019, TITFF attended the Historic Review and Design Commission meeting (HDRC) and spoke up on behalf of Texans, trying to get the HDRC to stop the plan to move the Alamo Cenotaph. Thankfully, the Tap Pilam Nation (Native American Coalition) had filed a Federal Lawsuit seeking for the site to be recognized an Official Cemetery. Because of this lawsuit, and this lawsuit alone, the HDRC tabled the plan to move the Alamo Cenotaph (voted 8-3) until they had time to be briefed on the merits of the lawsuit. This bought Texans some time to continue the fight to save the Alamo Cenotaph. The next HDRC meeting is scheduled on Dec 18, 2019 (tomorrow), 1pm, at 1901 South Alamo Street. TITFF has already made plans to attend the next meeting.
Our most recent battle to save the Alamo Cenotaph took place in Downtown San Antonio. TITFF was asked to join a "Save Our Texas History March" and speak at the end of the march. TITFF brought out about 40 supporters and TITFF Vice President Lamar Henry spoke at the event. At the last second TITFF President Brandon B was asked to speak too because 1 or 2 speakers did not show up. The idea of the march was educate Texans and tourist of the battle to save the Alamo Cenotaph. There were a lot of Texans that learned about this plan, to move the Alamo Cenotaph, that had no idea it was happening. Sadly, we are in the 11th hour, but the fight continues!
So as you can see, This Is Texas Freedom Force has been in the forefront of this battle to save the Alamo Cenotaph, but like we stated at the beginning of this article, you wouldn't know everything that TITFF has done if you hadn't been following us on our Facebook page. The media won't cover it because they don't want to show an organized resistance against the Reimagine The Alamo Master Plan, and others won't tell you that TITFF has been at the forefront of this battle all along.
Today TITFF has multiple social media pages, website, groups, etc., that you can follow to stay up to date on varies battles and issues. We invite everyone to join us in our battles, and participate in lots of different ways. During the TITFF #NotOneInch battle, we have only asked 2 times (since 2017) for Texans to help us financially in our battle to save the Alamo Cenotaph. The rest has been done on the dimes of TITFF Directors/Members or those who donate unsolicited (Which we cannot thank them enough). If you would like to follow us, there are several social media icons at the bottom of every page on this website, tap on them, it will send you straight to our Facebook, Twitter or Youtube pages. Reminder- hit follow or like on our pages to stay informed.
PS- Texans, join the fight, stay the course, continue the fight, we have to stop the city of San Antonio and George P Bush from moving the Alamo Cenotaph. #NeverSurrenderNorRetreat #NotOneInch #DontMoveTheAlamoCenotaph
God bless Texas,
"Protector Of All Things Texas"
This Is Texas Freedom Force