Pressure to change the Mississippi state flag has intensified since shocking images emerged of torch-wielding white supremacists in Charlottesville, Va., marching to protect symbols honoring the Confederacy—a weekend rally that ended with an anti-racist protester dead.
If, as a state, we insist that symbols that were selected precisely for their oppressive, coercive charge remain, we send a message to the rest of the nation and world that we do not fathom how their continued display has the power and potential to harm the hearts and minds of some.
Mississippi's history is one of beauty and blood; music and malevolence; literature and lamentation. We can't ignore the ugly parts; those stains don't wash out. But we sure as hell don't have to build monuments to them—literal or ideological.
Actor and activist Aunjanue Ellis talked back to Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant today to denounce his refusal to back changing the state flag to one without a symbol of the Confederacy.
I've said it before, and I will say it again and again, as many times as I have to: The Confederate symbol represents bigotry, racism and hatred. This is not an opinion. This is a fact.
Today, U.S. Representative Bennie G. Thompson (MS-02) calls for the removal of all confederate monuments and emblems in the United States Capitol and on the Mississippi state flag.
Some Mississippi officials are denouncing white nationalist violence that killed one person and injured several others during the weekend in Virginia.
The deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, is fueling another re-evaluation of Confederate statues in cities across the nation, accelerating their removal in much the same way that a 2015 mass shooting by a white supremacist renewed pressure to take down the Confederate flag from public property.
The majority of African American lawmakers in the Mississippi Legislature plan to boycott the annual meeting of the Southern Legislative Conference in Biloxi this weekend.
The Mississippi Civil Rights Museum opened its doors temporarily on Tuesday, June 27, for a preview of the impactful, honest and focused features, like the Freedom Riders exhibit.
Myrlie Evers-Williams, wife of slain civil-rights leader Medgar Evers, stood before a crowd of 600 people in 2013 for the groundbreaking of two new museums to document Mississippi's history.
A black Mississippi citizen is taking his case against the state's Confederate-themed flag to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Little Kingston Frazier is our mirror. The brutal murder of this 6-year-old in Jackson last week reflected the absolute best and the abhorrent worst of our community.
The ACLU of Mississippi has called on Gov. Phil Bryant, House Speaker Philip Gunn and the House Ethics Committee to investigate whether Rep. Karl Oliver's statement was a breach of Code of Ethics or House rules.
Black lawmakers in Mississippi are demanding the resignation of a white colleague who said Louisiana leaders should be lynched for removing Confederate monuments.
As the statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee came down Friday afternoon in New Orleans—along with three other Confederate monuments in the city including Jefferson Davis—the future of the monuments did not seem to be much of a conversation.
House Speaker Philip Gunn stripped Rep. Karl Oliver, R-Winona, of his vice-chairmanship today after Oliver’s Facebook post Saturday, which said those supporting the removal of Confederate monuments in Louisiana “should be LYNCHED!”
When Rep. Karl Oliver decided to take to Facebook Saturday night to vent his anger over the Confederate statues coming off public property in Louisiana, he ignited a firestorm over his call for the kind of terrorism the Old South is still known for: lynching.
Rep. Karl Oliver posted on Facebook that those taking down Confederate statues "should be LYNCHED!" He later apologized, but many are calling for his resignation.
This year, Gov. Phil Bryant waited until the last hour to sign the 2017 proclamation declaring April 2017 as "Confederate Heritage Month." He signed it March 31.
A federal appeals court has blocked an African-American attorney's effort to remove the Confederate battle emblem from the Mississippi state flag. He says he'll take the case to the Supreme Court.
An Instrument of Change
A half moon disappeared as the sun rose out of the Atlantic Ocean on Sept. 1, 1832. The humid coastal winds filled the sails and carried the ship through the waves as J.W. Martin captained the Schooner Wild Cat, a 40-plus ton sailboat, out of the port of Charleston, S.C.
Civil-rights leader Myrlie Evers-Williams, Mississippi-born rapper David Banner and a prominent South Carolina lawmaker are calling on Mississippi to remove the Confederate battle emblem from its state flag.
Ray Shores, who lives in Yazoo County and is a member of the Dixie Alliance, said he and flag supporters have challenged House Speaker Philip Gunn, R-Clinton, to a debate on the issue.
State Sen. John Horhn, D-Jackson, said he will file a bill asking lawmakers to take an up or down vote to keep or change the Mississippi state flag, the last to bear a symbol of the Confederacy.
Student senators at the University of Mississippi voted Tuesday night to ask the school administration to remove the Mississippi flag from campus because it contains a Confederate battle emblem that some say is an offensive reminder of slavery and segregation.
Mississippi House Speaker Philip Gunn, who became the first prominent Republican last summer to call for Mississippi to remove the Confederate battle emblem from its flag, said Monday that if the flag design is going to be reconsidered, it should be put on a statewide ballot just as it was 15 years ago.
The Mississippi House has halted a push to require that universities fly the state's Confederate-themed flag.
Mississippi universities that refuse to fly the Confederate-themed state flag could lose proposed tax breaks, the latest twist in a long battle over a symbol critics see as racist.
Rep. William Shirley, R-Quitman, is on a mission to make universities fly the state flag. The state flag debate flared up yesterday in the House of Representatives when Rep. Shirley introduced an amendment requiring all institutions of higher learning to fly the state flag if they want to continue to receive state funding.
Gov. Phil Bryant told reporters Tuesday that he is concerned over state universities taking down the state flag, though, mainly due to concerns about following state law.
The case against Gov. Phil Bryant for continuing to fly the current Mississippi flag could be the first in which judges consider an Equal Protection Clause claim based on government speech, if a 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel rules that Grenada attorney Carlos Moore has standing to make his case.
In the latest legal wrangling over one of Mississippi's most prominent symbols, a lawyer for a man who objects to the state's flag said Tuesday the Confederate-themed banner sends a message of "white supremacy."
We asked readers on Facebook to share some of the good-ole-boy/girl reasons they were seeing to keep the Confederate emblem in the Mississippi state flag.
Actress and Mississippi native Aunjanue Ellis recently spoke to the Jackson Free Press by phone on heritage, hate and bringing down the flag.
This month, as I'd hoped would happen when I broke the story, many people around the country—especially historians—are using the hashtag #ConfederateHistoryMonth to share facts about the Confederacy.
An attorney is making additional arguments in a federal lawsuit that seeks to remove the Confederate battle emblem from the Mississippi flag.
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi legislators this year won't attempt to redesign the last state flag that features the Confederate battle emblem because leaders say they can't find a majority to remove the symbol from the 122-year-old banner.
Kitsaa Stevens is arguably one of the more passionate defenders of the current Mississippi state flag, which has included the most notorious Confederate battle emblem in its canton since 1894.
Confederate Heritage Rally July 6, 2015
When I clicked on Dylann Roof's alleged racist "manifesto" yesterday, I wasn't surprised at all to see the name of the Council of Conservative Citizens name-checked. In some ways, I was happy to see it.
A crowd of more than 50 people gathered on the steps of the Mississippi Capitol this morning, armed with Confederate flags.
Acclaimed singer-songwriter Steve Earle is the latest person to join the flag debate though his voice comes in the form of a good-old-fashioned protest song.
If you grew up in the South, and especially if you're white, you've likely been told repeatedly (maybe even in a classroom) that "the Civil War wasn't fought over slavery." (They might have even called it the "War Between the States" or even the "War of Northern Aggression.")
Two weeks before the Mississippi Legislature allowed 19 state flag bills to die in committee, Gov. Phil Bryant took out a pen and signed an official governor's proclamation, declaring the month of April "Confederate History Month."
Sharon Brown isn't waiting for the Legislature to start the process to change the Mississippi flag.
I'll honor my Confederate heritage when we've done anything substantial to right hundreds of years of wrongs.
Mississippi's attorney general said Wednesday that he will defend his state's flag against a lawsuit that seeks to remove its Confederate battle emblem, even though he thinks the flag hurts the state and should change.