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Trump visits Mississippi Civil Rights Museum amid backlash

ANI | Updated: Dec 10, 2017 07:21 IST

Mississippi [United States], December 10 (ANI): United States President Donald Trump paid tributes to civil rights heroes and local officials at a civil rights museum in Mississippi on Saturday despite recent criticisms and boycotts from some leaders in the movement.

Trump, who spent about 30 minutes at the museum said, "We want our country to be a place where every child from every background can grow up free from fear, innocent from hatred, and surrounded by love, opportunity and hope."

"Today, we pay solemn tribute to our heroes of the past and dedicate ourselves to building a future of freedom, of equality and justice and peace," CNN quoted Trump as saying.

However, leaders from the civil rights movement and the local community criticised Trump's attendance as an affront to the spirit of the event.

"He does not deserve to be in Jackson for the celebration of the civil rights museum opening," CNN quoted civil rights activist Amos Brown, a board member of the NAACP, as saying at a press conference.

Criticising Trump for "not showing up for civil rights" both before and during his presidency, Brown said, "We respect your office but ... we do not respect your attitude and your division of the nation."

Mississippi Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson and Georgia Democratic Rep. John Lewis, who were involved in the civil rights movement, both skipped the opening event citing Trump's attendance at the museum as the reason.

The White House said it was "unfortunate" that the two would not be attending, CNN reported.

"It was my great honor to celebrate the opening of two extraordinary museums-the Mississippi State History Museum & the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum. We pay solemn tribute to our heroes of the past & dedicate ourselves to building a future of freedom, equality, justice & peace," Trump tweeted. (ANI)