Mascot Evolution Continues at Ole Miss: Students Voting on Landshark vs. Black Bear

The University of Mississippi’s student-body president, Dion Kevin III, today announced that students will vote on whether to change its Rebel Black Bear mascot to the popular Landshark, The Daily Mississippian, the university’s school newspaper, reported this morning. Students will vote on the mascot change next Tuesday alongside “personality” elections for Mr. and Miss Ole Miss, Homecoming Queen, maids and campus favorites. The university chose the Black Bear in 2010 in homage to famed Oxford writer William Faulkner, who wrote the famous short story, “The Bear.” The Rebel Black Bear has been the official mascot since 2010 when Ole Miss officially chose it to replace the old racist symbol of Colonel Reb, which still makes various unofficial appearances during campus events and, as the JFP staff noted with surprise once, dancing at weddings of Ole Miss graduates. Haley Barbour also had a Colonel Reb on his wedding cake back in the day; his campaign sent out the photo of the Ole Miss graduate and his wife, Marsha, cutting the cake during his successful campaign for governor of Mississippi. Continue Reading

Boozin’ at the Mississippi Legislature as State Takes Over Jackson Schools

Rep. Jay Hughes, D-Oxford, wasn’t playing today when he took to Facebook to expose a violation of the no-alcohol rule in the hallowed halls of the Mississippi State Capitol. He posted, verbatim:

ABOVE THE LAW & TRANSPARENCY. With a Supermajority you get to pick the laws you want to respect:

State law and lthe Legislature Joint Rules absolutely prohibit any alcohol inside the New Capitol building. Last night, a select few in charge chose to disregard that little law and have drinks in your sacred building. (Disclaimer – I do drink, but don’t consider myself above the law). Continue Reading

Andy Taggart, Prominent Mississippi Republican, Sticking Toe into Racial Healing, Flag Debate

Andy Taggart has been on the Mississippi political scene for a long time, perhaps most prominently as the chief of staff for former Mississippi Gov. Kirk Fordice, a Republican who was, shall we say, Trumpian in his own garish ways. For one thing, Fordice was an unapologetic, public apologist for the pro-Confederate, wink-wink racism crowd that his party has bowed before since Dixiecrats defected to the Republican Party after northern Dems supported civil rights legislation in the 1960s. Fordice was one of the Mississippi politicians outed in the 1990s for speaking to the Council of Conservative Citizens, for instance. That group grew out of the mailing lists of the white Citizens Council that started in Mississippi in the 1950s, and is blatantly racist. So racist, in fact, that Dylann Roof wrote in a “manifesto” found in his home that the organization inspired him. Continue Reading

AP Rolls Out Story on Hillary Clinton’s ‘Angry’ New Book, Quickly Changes It

Today, I saw a tweet on @jxnfreepress of our latest Associated Press story: “In angry new book, Clinton defends campaign strategy.” I did a doubletake. I then read the story. The first sentence, or “lede” as we call it in the business, repeated the A-word, which at least most opinionated, educated women know is a common pejorative for opinionated, educated women. “In a candid and angry new book, Hillary Clinton relives her stunning defeat to Donald Trump, admitting to personal mistakes and defending campaign strategy even as her return to the stage refocuses attention on a race Democrats still can’t believe they lost,” AP writers Jonathan Lemire and Bill Barrow wrote. Continue Reading