Civil Rights Museum in Mississippi Arouses Hope—and Distrust
The museum was meant to heal wounds, but some ask whether the state can truly own its shameful past.
When Mississippi decided to build a civil rights museum in 2011, it was hailed as a watershed event for a state that was one of the most virulently racist and violent during the turbulent civil rights era.
Former Governor William Winter, a Democrat whose legacy is his work to heal racial divisiveness, says the museum, scheduled to open in 2017, will make an important statement to the nation.
"The fact that this is the only state in the nation committing taxpayer funds to build a civil rights museum, in a state that arguably had the worst record of any state in defending segregation, is a symbol of the progress that has been made," he says. "We needed to do something dramatic