Xenophobia could bring back ‘closed society’ here

Just like in the old days, the newest crop of rabble-rousing demagogues – Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant, state Sen. Watson and their ilk – have their media messenger boys.

In the 1960s, Jackson Daily News editor Jimmy Ward used his column as a bully pulpit for segregation.

Bryant and crowd look to radio personalities like J.T. and Dave to inflame listeners about the threat from south of the border.

Watson’s bill “criminalizes work,” said longtime activist and civil rights veteran Rims Barber at a meeting of the Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance in Jackson last week. “It makes work a felony. Five years serving time for someone who’s simply trying to earn a buck.”

Joe Atkins
Clarion Ledger