7/29/20 - COVID in Communities & Broadband Program | Remembering John Lewis | Southern Remedy Health Minute | Flag Commission
State officials continue to weigh options to fight transmission of the coronavirus, and a new broadband program is introduced.
Then, Congressman John Lewis returns to Georgia today ahead of his funeral. We speak with two Mississippi Civil Rights veterans on Lewis’ contributions and legacy.
Plus, after a Southern Remedy Health Minute, the flag commission hears from a vexillologist as it prepares to submit a new design to the Legislature.
With cases, hospitalizations, and ICU utilization at their sustained highest levels, Mississippi is experiencing it's most severe month of the coronavirus pandemic. Governor Tate Reeves has issued mask mandates in 29 counties, and placed other restrictions on bars and social gatherings. Reeves says its important for residents to understand the virus spares no community. State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs says while levels of transmission have stabilized, the hard truth is family interaction is still driving the spread.
With more communities considering virtual options, the question of internet access has peculated. Reeves introduced a new program to addressed those growing concerns. Mississippi is using federal CARES Act funds and partnerships with electrical Co-Ops to invest more than $150 million dollars to bring broadband internet to un-served and under-served homes and businesses. Sally Doty, Executive Director of the Mississippi Public Utilities Staff, says the coronavirus pandemic has highlighted how important internet access is.
Civil Rights icon and "conscience of the Congress" Representative John Lewis will return to Georgia today, to lie in state in the Georgia state capitol ahead of his funeral tomorrow. Lewis was in instrumental figure in the fight for civil rights, helping lead Mississippi's Freedom Summer in 1964. Retired Methodist Reverend and activist Ed King was with Lewis that summer. He recalls what made Lewis a prominent leader during turbulent times.
Hezekiah Watkins was a mere teenager when he became a foot-soldier in the fight for civil rights. He tells us how he became acquainted with John Lewis after both men spent time in Parchman State Penitentiary.
Southern Remedy Health Minute
The team appointed to select a new flag design for the November ballot is sorting through over 1,000 public submissions. The commission, formed via the statute to retire the 1894 flag, met for the second time yesterday at the Two Mississippi Museums. Vexillologist Clay Moss was in attendance yesterday, providing guidelines for effective flag design. One of his guidelines: No words or seals. He says the requirement to include "In God We Trust" does present a small challenge.