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Coronavirus

Mississippi Mayor: ANTIFA Not Coming, COVID-19 Not a Hoax

TUPELO, Miss. — The mayor of the northeast Mississippi city where Elvis Presley was born announced that masks would be required in all public buildings and businesses starting Monday and decided to debunk a wide variety of rumors at once.

After asking residents to listen to health care professionals, Mayor Jason Shelton wrote on Facebook:

“Also, ANTIFA is not coming to Tupelo, Elvis statues are not being removed, you are not the target of some type of global conspiracy, it is impossible to erase history and no one has attempted to do so, COVID is not a hoax, you shouldn’t believe and share posts that are obviously false or used as political propaganda, and there is nothing “liberal” about any of the actions that have been taken by our administration regarding these matters,”

“Those were all specific allegations I have received either by phone, email or social media,” he said in a brief phone interview Monday.

Responses to his message on Friday and a follow-up Twitter message on Monday ranged from praise to “Your days are numbered.”

Shelton, a Democrat, has pushed for years to remove the Confederate battle flag from Mississippi’s state flag — something the state Legislature voted on Sunday to do. The City Council overturned his 2018 executive order to stop flying the flag at city buildings, but was poised — coincidentally, just after the Legislature’s vote — to revoke that ordinance on Monday, he said.

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