By Don Manning-Miller
Vice President for Finance Rust College
Holly Springs, Mississippi
Jay Hughes is showing his hidden colors again! Having already revealed his opposition to a woman’s right to choose, now according to the Clarion-Ledger on April 12, he said, “Whether the state flag should be redesigned is really a question of whether and how it is affecting economic growth.” Then abandoning leadership responsibility echoed the right-wing mantra, “It should be decided by the people.”
While it’s true that the current flag has negative economic effect on our state, anyone who is so insensitive to racial realities as to think that the insulting racist statement made by the Confederate symbol is primarily an economic issue as opposed to a critical moral issue continues to be part of our state’s problem, not part of a solution.
Any person with any claim to being part of a better, more progressive future for Mississippi when asked if the flag should be changed would simply and automatically say, “Yes.”
It is a special obligation for white Mississippians, even more for someone asking to be elevated to a top state office, to clearly oppose and take action to eliminate the offense to black residents and to the detriment of how we are viewed by the world.
To be “for” education but blind to the educational message the racist symbol on our flag sends to our young people, black and white, raises the question, “What kind of education are you for?” Should we fear this education will also include creation science, male dominance in the home and refutation of climate change in addition to honoring the fight to preserve slavery?
I do suppose this means we won’t see Jay on a picket line at an abortion clinic waving a Confederate flag, as this might hurt the clinic’s business and thereby become an “economic” issue.