What’s up with Thompson and Vicksburg?

Published 9:17 am Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Growing up in a house led by two teachers — one of whom taught American history — I was often surrounded by discussions of world events, national and state politics.

As I listened from my bedroom, I would hear them offer real-time critique of the newscasts they were watching.

At that time in my life, I was avoiding the local and national news, because frankly it was boring and only served as the time I could wrap-up my homework before MASH or Dukes of Hazard came on. Now, that was entertainment.

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Although I worked to avoid the news, I do remember the coverage of the Iran-Contra hearings, the invasion of Grenada and Panama. And, to this day, I can tell you exactly where I was standing in my childhood house the moment the first video came back from the start of the air war over Iraq in 1991.

Today, my oldest would rather go outside and wash the Suburban with her toothbrush than sit down and watch the news. Instead, it is me who laps up news and information from any outlet possible — including local and national news.

Which is where I learned something surprising last week.

Apparently, U.S. Rep. Bennie Thompson, and a few other lawmakers, held a town hall in Jackson last week to discuss many of the topics that are the lead stories in our national newspapers and newscast. In fact, I learned about the congressman’s town hall appearance from a Jackson TV station.

He took questions about the investigations into possible Russian hacking of our national elections. He fielded queries about the growing tensions with North Korea and offered insight into the ongoing and often combative legislative work going on in Washington, D.C.

The reason I said I was surprised was because that in my time living in Vicksburg, I cannot remember Congressman Thompson holding such a meeting in Vicksburg.

Before writing this column, I even Googled the following, “Congressman Bennie Thompson, town hall, Vicksburg.”

The top headlines that popped up were:

• Congressman Bennie Thompson not attending Trump’s inauguration

• Congressman Bennie Thompson’s staff chief pleads to tax evasion

• Congressman Thompson concerned that if Trump loses, civil or race war could start

• Congressman Bennie Thompson talks about terror concerns in the U.S.

Of the top four, none of them involved a town hall. I am not sure that is because there have not been any town halls in Vicksburg or if Google simply failed.

I am sure Congressman Thompson’s staff will correct me if I am wrong.

I have heard many opinions as to why Congressman Thompson does not frequent Vicksburg. They range from understandable to the outrageous, none of which deserve my help in spreading.

But, something should concern local voters when, during a two-week Easter recess our Congressman would not schedule a town hall in one of his district’s largest cities.

Please don’t confuse my questioning of Congressman Thompson as biased or unfair. It is neither. In fact, it is simply confusion.

I do not know Congressman Thompson. Never met him. Maybe that is the problem.

Tim Reeves is publisher of The Vicksburg Post. You may reach him at tim.reeves@vicksburgpost.c

About Tim Reeves

Tim Reeves, and his wife Stephanie, are the parents of three children, Sarah Cameron, Clayton and Fin, who all attend school in the Vicksburg Warren School District. The family are members of First Baptist Church Vicksburg. Tim is involved in a number of civic and volunteer organizations including the United Way of West Central Mississippi and serves on the City of Vicksburg's Riverfront Redevelopment Committee.

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