A traditional torchlight parade in advance of Saturday’s University of Texas football game against the University of Oklahoma has been canceled this year and for the foreseeable future as a result of violence and chaos in Charlottesville, Va.
However, students will still walk to the Main Mall just south of the UT Tower, where a rally Wednesday evening will include remarks by coach Tom Herman.
Officials of the Texas Exes, the alumni association at UT, said Tuesday that they wanted to be sensitive to students and other members of the campus community.
“We didn’t think it was wise to have people carrying tiki torches in light of the events at Charlottesville,” said Dorothy Guerrero, a spokeswoman for the Exes. “We want this to be a positive event. We want everyone to feel included and welcomed.”
In August, white nationalists and white supremacists marched with torches across the University of Virginia campus in Charlottesville. That touched off chaos resulting in the death of a counterprotester.
Last year’s torchlight parade and rally was the 30th annual installment of the event. The Texas Exes, formally known as the Ex-Students’ Association of the University of Texas, is an independent nonprofit organization.
It remains to be seen if the change at UT is permanent. “For the foreseeable I doubt we’ll be doing the torchlight portion of the event,” Guerrero said.
The original version of “UT alumni group cancels torchlight portion of rally ahead of OU game” appeared at Statesman.com.