The Christian Science Monitor

Senate runoff brings Mississippi’s painful past to the fore

To James Miles, the abandoned bridge about a mile from his home is little more than a directional landmark.

Most of the time, anyway.

As Mississippi prepares for a Senate runoff on Tuesday, the structure known as the Hanging Bridge – where six African-Americans, including two pregnant women, were brutally lynched in 1918 and 1942 – has been heavy on his mind.

Mr. Miles already supported Democratic candidate Mike Espy, whose campaign sign sits in his yard. But Mr. Espy’s Republican opponent, Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, gave Miles another reason to vote when she recently praised a supporter by saying, “If he invited me to a public hanging, I would be on the front row.” (She later apologized, saying she meant “no ill will.”)

Seeing old prejudices so openly displayed pains Miles, who remembers a time when he had to cross the street to let white pedestrians pass on

‘Mississippi is a red state’Timing and turnout

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Christian Science Monitor

The Christian Science Monitor3 min readPolitics
Gender Inequality, The Stubbornest Villain In Hollywood
A documentary about gender issues in show business reminds a former congressional reporter about the way women achieved recent victories in politics.
The Christian Science Monitor5 min read
Message In A Bottle: Forensics Meets Marine Science With EDNA
A new tool in marine research known as eDNA enables scientists to capture a snapshot of ocean communities without touching a single fish.
The Christian Science Monitor3 min readScience
Chesapeake Bay Water Quality Is Improving After Years Of Work
Cities and towns in the Chesapeake Bay watershed have long struggled with pollutants. Thanks to new EPA regulations, water quality improved last year.