November 24, 2018 10:37 am -

Cindy Hyde-Smith’s recently-exposed comment about sitting in the front row of a “public lynching” with one of her supporters is not a problem, but a symptom. It appears her Confederate impulses are wired into her brain and soul. In case you missed this Thanksgiving Day article from WaPo:

Starting her second year as a Mississippi state senator, Cindy Hyde-Smith arrived at the State Capitol in Jackson in 2001 to file one of her earliest pieces of legislation. Senate Bill 2604, as she proposed it, would have renamed a stretch of highway to the title it had in the 1930s: Jefferson Davis Memorial Highway.

While the president of the Confederacy did have ties to the state — representing it in the Senate before resigning when Mississippi left the Union — he had no known ties to her district.

The bill died in committee.

(More here.)

Overnight, The Jackson Free Press added a major story to the narrative. As this article goes to press, the link to the Free Press story was returning an error page, but Alternet has a summary of the not-so-fun facts:

Interim Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS) sent her daughter a segregation academy to avoid court decrees on desegregation, the Jackson Free Press reports. … “U.S. Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith [herself also] attended and graduated from a segregation academy that were set up so that white parents could avoid having to send their children to schools with black students, a yearbook reveals[.]” …

In the yearbook, called The Rebel, Hyde-Smith is seen in a cheerleader outfit under a mascot dressed up like a Confederate general and holding a Confederate flag.

The Free Press also reports:

Third from the right on the ground is a sophomore girl with short hair, identified in the caption as Cindy Hyde.

The photo, and the recently appointed Republican senator’s attendance at one of the many private schools that was set up to bypass integration, adds historic context to comments she made in recent weeks about a “public hanging” that drew condemnations from across the political spectrum.
Lawrence County Academy opened in the small town of Monticello, Miss., about 60 miles south of Jackson, in 1970. That same year, another segregation school, Brookhaven Academy, opened in nearby Lincoln County. Years later, Hyde-Smith would send her daughter, Anna-Michael, to that academy.

Hyde-Smith graduated from Lawrence County Academy in 1977, meaning she would have already been in school elsewhere at the time the academy opened.

Although the U.S. Supreme Court ordered public schools to desegregate in 1954 and again in 1955 to do so with “all deliberate speed,” Mississippi slow-walked the integration of its schools as long as possible, trying a variety of “school choice” schemes, state legislation and court cases to stop full integration, including arguing that white kids should not go to school with so-called “genetically inferior” black students.

Fifteen years after school integration become the law of the land, the Supreme Court ordered the immediate desegregation of public schools in 1969, and Mississippi Gov. John Bell Williams ordered that public schools integrate when students returned from Christmas break in early 1970. “So let us accept the inevitable that we are going to suffer one way or the other, both white and black, as a result of the court’s decree,” he said at the time.

It is no coincidence that the academy Hyde-Smith attended opened the very year after the highest court’s ultimatum, as did others around the state.

The full article is a must-read-now!

Will this revelation be enough to derail Hyde-Smith’s cahnces of being elected to the US Senate? We will find out on Tuesday, when Mississippi holds its runoff election.

Dave "Doctor" Gonzo is a renegade media producer, occasional bassist, web developer, and Grammy® voter. He is editor and senior contributor to News Behaving Badly. He has written for American Politics Journal, Alan Colmes' Liberaland (Dave was also a semi-frequent Friday guest on Alan's radio show), and (in print) Audio Review. Dave lives in s fortified compound with doorman in Manhattan's not-so-trendy Yorkville neighborhood.