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Old 06-30-2015, 03:21 PM
 
Location: Katy, TX
66 posts, read 151,089 times
Reputation: 83

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I currently live in Texas (Houston area) and my family and I are most likely going to need to move to Mississippi for my husband's job. We have heard a lot about Mississippi and racism, on both the black and white sides. We have even heard that they all hate each other. I was born and raised in California and believe that everyone is the same regardless of their skin color. I think it would be hard for me to live where there is abundant racist attitudes.

Without opening up a box of worms, and without causing too big of a stir as I know this is a loaded question - how are the views REALLY in Mississippi? Is their really an obvious separation? Is it regional? I'm trying to get honest opinions from those that have lived there a long time. What I do not want is any kind of bashing. Thanks!
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Old 06-30-2015, 04:00 PM
 
Location: NE Mississippi
13,660 posts, read 8,573,131 times
Reputation: 19864
Nah. It's a bunch of Hooey, at least around here.

Tupelo just won All American City from the National Civic League - the 5th time they have won.
Tupelo: All-America City again - Daily Journal

I've never seen a racial event of any sort. My neighbor is Black. Has a bigger house than mine, too. I'm retired now, but when I worked about half the force was Black. And I never saw any sort of problem. I think our area is about average at being something like 35% Black.

The kids all run in a mixed group at the mall, so I've never sensed a problem there.

Today, they had a picture of the first gay couple to be granted a marriage license in our county. Other then being first it was no big deal. My wife and I have known a gay man for years. His view of marriage is about the same as most everyone else these days; "What the HELL for?!"

I wrote a piece a couple years back about how my truck quit and I had to sit in traffic waiting for the wrecker. Lots of people offered to help. About half were Black, half White.
I wouldn't hesitate to approach anyone anywhere in this area.

But I can only speak for North East Mississippi. Around here we just get along.

But you didn't say where you were going. It might make a big difference.
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Old 06-30-2015, 04:06 PM
 
Location: Katy, TX
66 posts, read 151,089 times
Reputation: 83
Thank you for your reply. We are looking at being in the Jackson area, one of the towns surrounding it most likely, not Jackson itself though. I try to take the things we have heard with a grain of salt. But then I heard that some restaurants only serve blacks or vice versa. Or that some places of business have a third restroom for blacks. In this day and age - I'm like WTH?? We will be visiting in a couple weeks to get a feel for the area.
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Old 06-30-2015, 04:11 PM
 
Location: The South
5,223 posts, read 3,633,703 times
Reputation: 7900
You have watched way too much TV
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Old 06-30-2015, 04:12 PM
 
Location: Katy, TX
66 posts, read 151,089 times
Reputation: 83
It didn't come from TV; it came from the mouths of some fellow Texans. It doesn't sound right to me which is why I am asking.
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Old 06-30-2015, 04:19 PM
 
1,012 posts, read 1,216,508 times
Reputation: 1023
I have lived a lot of places (including Houston)

The Jackson area is the most open racially hostile place I have ever lived. It comes from all sides. Racism and Christianity are the dominate forces here.

I find that the people who tell me I don't know what I am talking about or defend this place most often have not lived other places for any length of time or are a white Christian living in a nice area so they are fairly oblivious to it.
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Old 07-01-2015, 08:06 AM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
2,794 posts, read 3,897,064 times
Reputation: 4307
Quote:
Originally Posted by SYeera View Post
Thank you for your reply. We are looking at being in the Jackson area, one of the towns surrounding it most likely, not Jackson itself though. I try to take the things we have heard with a grain of salt. But then I heard that some restaurants only serve blacks or vice versa. Or that some places of business have a third restroom for blacks. In this day and age - I'm like WTH?? We will be visiting in a couple weeks to get a feel for the area.
I grew up in Mississippi in the 70's and 80's and still visit regularly. I've never heard of modern "colored bathrooms". Ever.

*Except*

Just like a white person would hesitate to wander alone into South Central LA, and a black person would hesitate to wander alone into rural Connecticut, those same places exist in every state. Including Mississippi. So yeah, if a black person is in a rural area and finds a diner with 4WD pickups and Rebel Flags hung everywhere he should keep on driving. Likewise if I (as a white guy) found a juke joint where every vehicle looked like it was straight from the 'hood I wouldn't stop.

Other places with potential problems will be where there is a distinct economic divide between races, or where only one race chooses to live there. Like a rich mostly-white gentrified neighborhood adjacent to a mostly-black HUD complex. Or a rural area where all the whites send their kids to the local "Christian" academy where they learn about how the dinosaurs are extinct because they couldn't fit on the ark and all the blacks (and poorer whites) send their kids to the local public school where they teach-to-the-test. That's what my home town has turned into; I'm fortunate to have gotten out before that happened.

This isn't a Mississippi thing; these rules apply everywhere on the planet. I've seen the same thing when I lived in Jackson, Chattanooga, and Kansas City, and when I visited everywhere from Cincinnati to Washington, DC, to San Francisco to Los Angeles to the rural California desert.

But these are the exceptions. Listener described typical life in Mississippi. Find a place with a decent mix of races all with comparable incomes, and you'll be fine. Just like you would be in a similar location in any other state. If you have school-age kids, pay close attention to school ratings because they are very important. Madison has good schools.


Even with the recent flag kerfluffle (see recent thread in this forum) most of the flag wavers aren't racist. They are middle-aged people raised on Bo and Luke Duke with no memory of that symbol's meaning in the days of Jim Crow. My brother has one of those flags in the back window of his truck and even a tattoo of it being waved by Yosemite Sam, but he doesn't have a racist bone in his body. He works alongside people of all races, his adopted step-son is mixed race, and his group of friends includes people of many races.

Last edited by jwkilgore; 07-01-2015 at 08:21 AM..
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Old 07-01-2015, 11:32 AM
 
Location: Katy, TX
66 posts, read 151,089 times
Reputation: 83
Thank you so much for your response. It's exactly what I was looking for and hoping to find out. We will be going to MS in a couple weeks to start checking things out. I definitely had the feeling that some of the things we heard were somewhat exaggerated.
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