In a series of patriotic events set for Governor Deal’s January 12th inauguration is the renewed practice of ringing Georgia’s Liberty Bell in the newly constructed – but still fenced in- Liberty Plaza. The Liberty Bell, a gift from the Truman administration, hasn’t rung in several decades and Governor Deal is hoping the new tradition will become a part of the inaugural ceremony formalities in the future.
The bell, like protesters and activists, is being moved from the Capitol grounds to Liberty Plaza along with many of 2015’s inaugural events, but the irony of Georgia’s own ‘free speech zone’ across the street from the People’s House has gone mostly undiscussed. Creative Loafing took the concept to task back in August questioning the distant and restricted area for peaceful dissent while the Georgia Building Authority called it ‘the new front door’…whatever that means. Adding to the irony, the bell reads “Dedicated to you, a free citizen in a free land.” Hopefully everyone will remember that the real activism takes place inside the Capitol by speaking with legislators directly. But for what it’s worth, the bell is a pretty nice touch.