JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – It was like a victory lap for members of the Mississippi Legislature Black Caucus members and those in the Hinds County government. As they learned a new state flag is coming to Mississippi. But many see this as only one step in a bigger fight to help minorities and people physically struggling in the state.
For years the current Mississippi flag hasn’t flown outside city and county buildings in downtown Jackson, but a flag without the confederate emblem will change that.
But removing one symbol they’ve found offensive and tolerating oppression is only one small step for county and state political leaders who want to build off this victory going forward to solve problems physically holding minorities back. Credell Calhoun says one of those things is the expansion of Medicaid.
“We’re going to still work to get Medicaid passed,” Hinds County Supervisor Calhoun said. “Medicaid needs to be passed; it is needed more now than ever because of Corona.”
Under the department of health statistics as of June 29. Hinds County still leads the state with 1,272 African Americans infected with COVID-19. Over 1,000 more than whites, plus 142 deaths. Now leaders want COVID concerns to be accepted to vote absentee from home.
“This virus is so serious, I’ve said it all along we should have shut the entire country down,” Edwards Mayor Marcus Wallace stated. “But because we didn’t, we have to do things and strategize coming up with ways to stay out in front of this virus.”
Then switch gears to education with more young people getting involved to help push the flag to come down leaders want stronger schools to reinforce knowledge to power kids.
“My granddaddy, he told me if you get an education, you’ll be alright,” Supervisor Calhoun told us. “But too many of us are not able to get an education and we can’t get up. Some of the reason was because of this flag and other things.”
In the end the strongest voice from leaders is to get out and vote.