Coin toss may decide MLK parade fight

HOUSTON, TX This development comes after a challenge of the city's parade ordinance was lost. The city's special events director may flip a coin and decide which of two rival parade organizations will run next year's MLK day parade.

The Black Heritage Society and MLK Grand Parade both applied for parade permits but under city ordinance only one parade can be held in downtown per day. Usually applications are chosen on a first come first serve basis but both groups applied at the same time.

You'll remember early this year, Ovide Duncantell, President of the Black Heritage Society, filed a federal lawsuit against the city. He said Houston's parade ordinance was unconstitutional. But late last week the judge upheld the ordinance.

Charles Stamps of the MLK Parade Foundation said in a statement about the coin toss, "The city wants to stage a circus and we intend to take no part in it."

The attorney of the Black Heritage Society, Annette Lamoreaux said in a statement that, "If they're only having one parade, this is a much better method to decide who gets the permit."

Stamps says there is a better solution, "We are taking measures to see both parades survive, coexist and ultimately combine."

This could happen since the city allows four parades to be held in one day, but only one can be held in downtown.

The MLK Grand Parade web site says the parade is the nation's third largest, behind the Rose Bowl and the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parades.

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