Citing Trump, John Lewis Will Skip Mississippi Civil Rights Museum Opening

Citing Trump, John Lewis Will Skip Mississippi Civil Rights Museum Opening

"This institution and event should be a celebration of the hard-won progress in civil rights, but the main speaker, Donald Trump, is actively attacking that progress and turning us back to the dark days of hatred and division", Mabus said.

"We are telling a much longer story in the Museum of Mississippi History, a much deeper story in the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum", said Katie Blount, director of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. "The struggles represented in this museum exemplify the truth of what really happened in Mississippi", Lewis said in a statement issued with Rep. The Mississippi Civil Rights Museum concentrates on a shorter, but intense span, from 1945 to 1976. Mr Trump plans to participate in the opening as part of his tour through the American South, White House officials confirmed on Tuesday.

"The president hopes others will join him in recognizing that the movement was about removing barriers and unifying Americans of all backgrounds", she said.

Earlier this week, Lewis expressed doubts as to whether he could "live with myself" if he was on the program with the president at the ribbon-cutting event in Mississippi.

Jerry Spangler, Vice President of Special Environments at the company said, "This is another project, a very special project to us, that we can hang our hat on and be very proud of".

Trump ultimately visited the museum more than a month later on February 21.

Mr Lewis previously refused to attend Mr Trump's inauguration, claiming he did not see the former businessman as a legitimate President.

The museums take an unflinching look at the state's past - complete with displays of slave chains, Ku Klux Klan robes and graphic photos of lynchings and firebombings.

"The civil rights marchers who are being honored would turn over in their grave knowing that somebody who's stood for that stuff would be in attendance", Thompson told the Boston Globe "The question is, do I want to be associated with someone who is that narrow in focus".

"I'm the same age as Trump". "If he could, he would wipe all us right off the map".

Both the Mississippi Democratic Party and the NAACP chapter in Mississippi said they had not been informed that Trump had been invited by Bryant until it was published in news reports.

"For me, it is not political, it is about this person in particular, who is divisive and I think has many, many racial tendencies", Steinberg said. "I don't know anyone who agrees that this is a move honoring people in the civil rights movement".