Trump's Planned Visit to Mississippi Civil Rights Museum Opening 'an Insult'

Rep. John Lewis D-Ga. in Washington on Nov. 29 2017
Rep. John Lewis D-Ga. in Washington on Nov. 29 2017
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08 December, 2017

President Donald Trump is scheduled to attend the museums' opening, a White House official said on Monday, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss the trip before it is formally announced.

Lewis is the latest in a growing number of politicians, civil rights groups and activists who have said they will boycott Saturday's opening ceremony in Jackson, Miss., or have called on Trump to skip it.

"President Trump's attendance and his hurtful policies are an insult to the people portrayed in this civil rights museum", they said.

"America can't really turn a corner with regards to its racist and violent past and present until the South, and particularly a state like MS, confronts it - and confronts it unflinchingly", Glaude said.

The Mississippi Civil Rights Museum is the only state-sponsored civil rights museum in the country.

"We think it's unfortunate that these members of Congress wouldn't join the President in honoring the incredible sacrifice civil rights leaders made to right the injustices in our history", White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Thursday. Republican Gov. Phil Bryant, a Trump supporter, invited the president.

Trump ultimately visited the museum more than a month later on February 21.

"The civil rights marchers who are being honored would turn over in their grave knowing that somebody who's stood for that stuff would be in attendance", Thompson told the publication. Bryant said the president's appearance brings importance to the event. "It kind of feels like that's the card the governor has deal at this time", he said.

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"I'm the same age as Trump".

The national NAACP also disapproved of the invitation.

Lewis, a civil rights icon, has been a frequent critic of the president and previously sparred with him over Twitter after saying he didn't feel Trump was a "legitimate president".

"He has created a commission to reinforce voter suppression, refused to denounce white supremacists, and overall, has created a racially hostile climate in this nation", Johnson added.

"We know that the work that we do is going to be in museums and on display not only through our generation but for all of the generations to come", said Spangler.

Jeff Steinberg is the founder of the Sojourn to the Past, a program that educates children about the Civil Rights movement, and is attending the opening Saturday.

A display in the civil rights museum tells of the 1966 KKK firebombing of the Dahmer home outside Hattiesburg after Vernon Dahmer, the local NAACP leader, announced he would pay poll taxes for black people registering to vote.

Those were ways of defiantly pushing back against African-Americans who dared challenge racial oppression, and taking a jab at journalists covering the civil rights movement.


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