School Board meeting turns ugly after board member calls residents racist


NATCHEZ, Miss. (WJTV) – A Natchez-Adams County School Board meeting turns ugly after a board member calls people in the crowd racist.

It all started after the community voted down a school bond for $35 million.

In the video School Board member, Philip West can be heard saying, “Yea you’re not racist, just taking racist actions.”

At that point, people in the crowd start yelling back at West. West continues by saying, “I will raise my voice at anybody.”

One person then walks up to West and says, “I’ll drag your {expletive} outside.”

Thursday’s Natchez-Adams County School Board meeting looked more like a scene from a movie than a discussion on how to improve schools in the area.

The school board is asking to borrow $9 million from the community to build new facilities, which would raise taxes for people across the county.

“Nobody wants to be paying more taxes especially not for a failing school. Money is not going to help that; a new school is not going to fix that,” Kevin Wilson said.

Kevin Wilson and his wife Dana started a petition to fight the Board’s decision, gaining nearly 3,400 signatures.

When they presented it, board member Philip West responded by saying the people who signed the petition were against black children getting an education.

“It kind of spiraled out of control we were accused of being racists on Christians didn’t want black children to go to school,” Wilson explained.

“They became unruly and got out of order some of them even came up to physically harm me and made threatening statements to me,” School Board member, Philip West said.

Through the yelling, you can hear someone say they’re going to drag West outside.

“Evidentially there are some people who still think they’re living in the 1800’s and I want an apology for the actions of them they acted like they were thugs and hoodlums,” West said.

The Wilsons say they were hurt by the accusations thrown at them.

“It’s almost like a nightmare. We went there open-minded, the public post I the newspaper said if you wanted to do a petition you could do is our right to have a petition,” Dana Wilson continued.

Dana Wilson says she’s received death threats and people have threatened to boycott her business.

West says he stands by his statements.

“I will never stop trying to make sure that the children in Natchez and Adams County and the children in our state have equal justice under the law,” West explained.

Wilsons say they will continue to fight this.

“At the end of the day we’re not going to be bullied, and we’re not going to let things that you see on Facebook stop us from following what we know in our hearts,” Dana Wilson said.

Right now the issue has been tabled until the Board’s attorney can verify all of the signatures on the petition.

Wilson says he will continue to get more signatures.

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