‘Kill the Bill’: Mississippi State Conference NAACP members hold press conference regarding House Bill 1020

Published: Feb. 21, 2023 at 7:45 PM CST
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Leaders and members of the Mississippi State Conference NAACP climbed the state capitol’s steps Tuesday afternoon in an effort to make their voices heard over the latest state legislation.

“Kill the Bill” became the catchphrase of the day following speeches given by MSC NAACP leaders.

House Bill 1020, along with Senate Bill 2889, were the main points of discussion, and other points such as Medicare/Medicaid, education, and crime were addressed as well.

“This is a house that has been weaponized against us,” said Executive Director of MSC NAACP, Charles Taylor. “As we see these bills, House Bill 1020, Senate Bill 2889, and the countless others, these bills are weapons. These bills are weapons of anti-democracy. But we’re here to stand to be pro democracy.”

In regards to HB 1020, MSC NAACP members believe the bill targets African Americans by suppressing voter rights, judicial power, and doesn’t solve the glaring crime issues in the capital city.

“Once again, Mississippi is at the threshold of repeating his past mistake of being consumed by racism, greed, and the power to suppress the blacks in the city of Jackson,” said President of MSC NAACP, Reverend Doctor Robert James.

In regards to SB 2889, MSC NAACP members believe the idea of handing over the federal funds allocated for the city’s water system to a separate entity may lead to disaster.

“A bill that would transfer ownership from Jackson city, water, and waterways, assess it to the Mississippi capital regional authority to take control over nearly $800 million in federal money,” said Reverend Doctor James. “It is amazing. Is it fair? Is it true?”

Many at the capitol called for a different approach to both of the aforementioned bills.

One idea preached was to encourage state leaders to push for positive change in crime-ridden and poor infrastructure areas of Jackson.

“Every time the legislature comes out with all of these assaults against the city of Jackson, the blackest city in the state of Mississippi, that is violence against our people,” said President of Jackson NAACP Branch, Nsombi Lambright.

Members of the NCS NAACP are simply calling for state lawmakers to do the right thing.

“All that we’re asking you guys to do is do the right thing,” said State President of Youth and College Divisions, Michael Pittman. “We are your future, and what you do now dictates what happens later.”

The House of Representatives passed the bill on February 7th. It’s been referred to two Senate committees, but neither of those have taken action yet.

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