On The MS State Flag at Ole Miss (CNN, 2017)
I partnered with two brilliant black women—Dominique Scott and Tysianna Marino—to write this piece.
It is the story of their fight and organizing efforts to have the Mississippi State flag, which bears the "stars and bars" of the Confederate emblem, removed from the campus of the University of Mississippi in 2015.
Here's a selected Excerpt:
"The sun rises. The rain slows. A pleasant mist is quickly enveloped by thick humidity. Cars fill the circle. Students shuffle to class. Much has changed since 1848, since violence and nearly 4,000 state marshals and federal soldiers descended on the campus during the Meredith riots of 1962. Much remains the same. There is the Lyceum, some parts unchanged since its construction nearly two centuries ago. There is the towering monument that continues to greet entrants to the Circle, engraved with the following dictum in white-gray marble: “To our Confederate Dead.” And there are black students—like Marino and Scott and an intimate community of others—who continue to disrupt the campus’s racial status quo, to question its strained and problematic history, to celebrate personal successes and growth while grappling with the weight of their hope and ambition. Despite challenges and setbacks, they persist, demanding that the university continue to create space, amid the magnolias and immaculate fraternity houses, amid the neatly kept gardens and lakes, to reckon with its ghosts."