I looked forward to my first visit to Mississippi. During decades of travel across the USA, I have covered much of the South, but had not wandered through or made any forays into the great State of Mississippi.
Last Wednesday, Mississippi petitioned the Supreme Court to reverse a lower court decision that is keeping the state's only remaining abortion clinic open--for now. The clinic is under threat of closure, thanks to a 2012 state law that requires abortion clinic doctors to gain admitting privileges at local hospitals.
Recently, a study by Education Week found that Mississippi has the worst schools in America. Mississippi ranked 51st -- behind every other state, and the District of Columbia.
I finally understood how difficult it was for Mama to go from glittering Chicago down to middle-of-nowhere Texas, like part of her had been sold down the river. And suddenly, Chicago in my mind became a beacon of happiness.
When crude oil prices sank this winter, companies scaled back their fracking plans in the Tuscaloosa Marine Shale deposit, running from central and southeast Louisiana into Mississippi. Exploration and drilling is mostly on hiatus there until crude rebounds, industry members said last week.
If Mississippi is committed to change -- instead of being content with leading the nation in gonorrhea and chlamydia -- it will begin to change its sexual education policy and learn how to properly engage educators like Sanford Johnson.
Although we expect marriage equality from the court systems, which makes us equal in the eyes of the law, it is also important that we achieve equality in the eyes of our fellow human and our society.
BP acted with gross negligence in precipitating the April 20, 2010 spill, Barbier ruled last September. This mid-January, he found that BP wasn't grossly negligent or reckless in its source-control efforts to stop the spill.
I didn't live in MLK's lifetime, but I'd like to think that if he were still around today, he would agree with me on the injustices that Mississippi K-12 students are experiencing. I have a dream that this generation of Mississippi students will be the ones to break the cycle of poverty in their home state -- but it starts with strong educational access.
Make no mistake, there truly are ghosts in Mississippi. Most often, they inhabit long forgotten places and toil with hopes that their mortal lives have not been lived in vain. A few years ago, I first traveled to a forgotten place to meet a forgotten man.
Elections are behind us, and many new state legislative sessions don't begin until January -- yet lawmakers are already giving us a preview of the bills they intend to pass into law first chance they get.
Marriage could be coming to Florida sooner than we expected. Plus, after last week's big win, the Mississippi lawsuit is now on the fast track to an appeal. And Kansas just lost their latest attempt to hold back the start of marriage.
An unjust law has been struck down, ensuring that elders will live out their final years knowing they are equal in their home state, ushering in an era in which a gay kid growing up in Mississippi will be able to envision a future in which she marries the love of her life in her hometown.
Last week's decision in Campaign for Southern Equality v. Bryant could lift the ban on same-sex marriage in Mississippi forever. However, that decision is unique among other pro-marriage-equality rulings in that it came from the pen of a black U.S. district judge with a strong record of supporting civil rights.
The state of Florida cancelled the drivers' licenses of a gay couple after they married in New York and hyphenated their last name. Even though it's their new legal name, the state is refusing to recognize it, so they've sued.
U.S. pellet exports nearly doubled last year to 3.2 million short tons and headed mostly to Europe, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. European nations, particularly the UK, are using wood pellets to replace coal for electricity generation and heating.