The Dogs are Howling Again at Neshoba Co. Fair
After the Republican convention in 1980, Reagan’s first stop was to the Neshoba Co. Fair in Mississippi. May seem like an odd place to go, but the demographics were different back. The trip paid off when he won Mississippi by 1% point in the presidential election. Reagan’s reasons for going to there were disgusting at best. It was the site of one of the most vicious race crimes of the 1960s. Three young civil rights activists were and burned to death. The crime went unsolved because local police took part in the crime, and the feds threatened to get involved.
Reagan decided to go and make a speech on states’ rights. It was a dog whistle to the KKK, and the rest of the George Wallace base. The feds would not get involved in their local issues with African-Americans when he became president. He also opposed the Civil Rights Act and a National Holiday for Martin Luther King Jr., so this was not out of character, even though it is missing from the Republican rewrite of Regan’s presidency.
The Reagan presidential campaign was the first to go to the Neshoba County Fair, and it should have been they the last. It held true for 36 years. After the Republican Convention this year, the Trump campaign’s first stop was to be an Hispanic outreach event in Miami. Trump campaign sent Donald Trump Jr. to the Neshoba Country Fair, and cancelled the Hispanic event.
At least Regan could make a feeble attempt to excuse his visit back them as Mississippi was still a swing state. The Trump family have no excuse. Mississippi is now deep red. As Trump Jr. spoke in front of a confederate banner, he spoke about the controversy over the confederate flag being part of the Mississippi state flag, saying “I believe in traditions. I don’t see a lot of the nonsense that’s created with these things……..leaving some of the traditions the way they are in this country, there’s nothing wrong with some tradition.” The dogs are all howling again in Mississippi.