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Attitudes in Mississippi by Erle Johnston, Jr. State Director, Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission When Governor Paul Johnson delivered his inaugural address on January 21, 1964, he made these observations, and I quote: "We are Americans as well as Mississippians. Hate or prejudice or ignorance will not lead Mississippi while I sit in the Governor's chair. If I must fight, it will not be a rearguard defense of yesterday, it will be an all-out assault for our share of tomorrow." A little more than a year later, on February 16, 1965, Governor Johnson appeared before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights at Jackson, Mississippi. He said, and again I quote: "The Civil Rights Act of 1964 as passed by the Congress is the law of the land and Mississippi knows it. Most Mississippians do not like the new law. They are convinced its passage was unwise. Some of them will challenge its constitutionality in the courts, but resistance will be confined to such accepted legal processes. Leaders of state-wide organizations representing business, professional, industrial, and religious groups have urged our people to make the necessary adjustment to the Civil Rights Act in a calm, intelligent manner, regardless of personal convictions. I assure all Americans that Mississippi will continue to be the most law-abiding state in the nation. What we need from our fellow Americans is good will, encouragement, understanding, and assistance. Having accepted the will of the nation's majority, Mississippi now asks those who have criticized our former position and actions to get off our back and get on our side." By taking a stand against hate and prejudice, by urging obedience to law, even if it is unpopular, and by reaffirming his intention to preserve order,
|Title||Attitudes in Mississippi; December 1967|
|Description||From the Earle E. Johnston Papers. Transcribed copy of a typewritten document entitled "Attitudes in Mississippi" written by Erle Johnston in December 1967. Johnston describes what he considers to be the prevailing attitudes in Mississippi in the late 196|
|Coverage (time period)||circa December 1967|
Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party.
Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission.
|Mississippi county||Forrest County (Miss.)|
|Geographic location||Hattiesburg (Miss.)|
|Format||Digital reproduction of a 14-page document.|
|Publisher||University of Southern Mississippi Libraries. (electronic version)|
|Contributors||Electronic version made available through a National Leadership Grant for Libraries from the Institute for Museum and Library Services.|
|Notes||A finding aid for this collection is available online at: http://www.lib.usm.edu/legacy/archives/m319.htm; This item is part of the Civil Rights in Mississippi Digital Archive.|
|Rights||Copyright protected. Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required.|
|Contributing institution||Special Collections, McCain Library and Archives, University of Southern Mississippi.|
|Collection||M319 Johnston (Erle E., Jr.) Papers.|
|Source||Box 8, Folder 26|
|Digital repository||University of Southern Mississippi Digital Collections.|
|Digital collection||Historical Manuscripts and Photographs.|