State Politics

Groups call on Bryant to condemn recent racial violence

jcfitzhugh@sunherald.com

Gov. Phil Bryant should condemn recent acts of racial violence in Mississippi, the Southern Poverty Law Center, Mississippi State Conference of the NAACP and Mississippi Center for Justice say.

In a news release, the groups cited several recent incidents in the state that they believe call for Bryant to speak up: The shooting up of a memorial plaque to Emmett Till, a black teen brutally murdered in 1955 in Money after allegedly whistling at a white woman; the noose a white student reportedly threw around the neck of a black student at Stone High School; and the burning of an African-American church in Greenville, where the words “Vote Trump” were spray-painted.

The news release points out that, shortly before the incidents, Bryant declared October to be “racial reconciliation month.”

“Gov. Bryant asked Mississippians to ‘promote the unifying message of racial reconciliation and healing that can enhance and improve the lives of citizens, businesses and communities in Mississippi’,” the news release says.

In addition to condemning the actions, the groups say Bryant and state legislative leaders should support removing the Confederate emblem from the state flag.

The news release was sent by MCJ president Reilly Morse, NAACP state president Derrick Johnson and SPLC managing attorney Jody Owens.

Anita Lee: 228-896-2331, @calee99

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