Mississippi will be voting on many issues from its racist past.
The people will be voting on the replacement of the flag from the reconstruction….and it will also be voting on the “Old Boys” network that has made it all but impossible for a person of color from winning a statewide position like governor or attorney general et al.
It was 1987 when Mississippi did away with the ban on interracial marriages.
In 1967, 17 Southern states (all the former slave states plus West Virginia plus Oklahoma) still enforced laws prohibiting marriage between whites and non-whites. Maryland repealed its law at the start of Loving v. Virginia in the Supreme Court.
After the Supreme Court ruling declaring such laws to be unconstitutional, the laws in the remaining 16 states ceased to be enforceable. Besides removing such laws from their statute books, a number of state constitutions were also amended to remove language prohibiting miscegenation: Mississippi in 1987, South Carolina in 1998 and Alabama in 2000. In the respective referendums, 52% of voters in Mississippi, 62% of voters in South Carolina and 59% of voters in Alabama voted in favour of the amendments. In Alabama nearly 526,000 people voted against the amendment, including a majority of voters in some rural counties.
Think about that….1987 is only 33 years ago that the ban went into effect.
This social issue has a long history…..
Centuries before the same-sex marriage movement, the U.S. government, its constituent states, and their colonial predecessors tackled the controversial issue of “miscegenation,” or mixture of races. It’s widely known that the Deep South banned interracial marriages until 1967, but less widely known is that many other states did the same. California, for example, prohibited these marriages until 1948. In addition, politicians made three brazen attempts to ban interracial marriages nationally by amending the U.S. Constitution.
Now we Mississippians have a chance to do away with even more of the racist history by voting in November.
Mississippi voters have never elected a Black candidate to statewide office, despite having the largest proportional Black population of any U.S. state at nearly 40%.
Advocates hope an amendment on the November ballot may change that.
Mississippi is the only state with a multistep process for electing statewide positions like governor, attorney general and secretary of state. Its electoral college-like voting system was designed by white framers in Southern Reconstruction with the intent to disenfranchise minority voters and uphold white power in politics.
If the amendment to simplify the process passes, advocates say it would spur more minority candidates to run for office in the Magnolia state — and assure minority voters their constitutionally protected right to equal representation is secure. If it doesn’t, they say it will serve as a painful reminder of the state’s deep history of voter suppression.
Maybe now Mississippi can move into the 21st century….something that has been resisted for many years…..
Hopefully all my readers are having a good weekend….be well….be safe…….
I Read, I Write, You Know
“lego ergo scribo”