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131st YEAR ISSUE 35


‘We Have Been Believers’: library celebrates African American life by Kristina Norman Staff Writer

Mississippi State University’s Mitchell Memorial Library celebrates black history month with a new exhibit focusing on African American life in Mississippi. The exhibit titled: “We Have Been Believers: African American Life in Mississippi 18351870,” highlights African American life during the 19th and 20th centuries with a focus on the areas of education, business, civil rights and writers. Jessica Perkins Smith, MSU’s manuscript archivist, said the exhibit highlights items from the university’s special collections on African American life. All of the materials found in the exhibit represent the library’s various departments from archives, manuscripts and rare books. For this exhibit, Smith wanted to move away from the library’s frequently used collections which were featured regularly in other exhibits. To give the exhibit a fresh take, Smith began digging into the university’s exhibit collection. What

Black History began as “Negro History Week” Month which was created in 1926 by Carter G. Woodson, a noted African American historian, scholar, educator, and publisher. It became a month-long celebration in 1976. The month of February was chosen to coincide with the birthdays of Frederick

Douglas & Abraham Lincoln.

source: Jenn McFadden, The Reflector

she discovered in her digging produced some interesting finds. Among the items she found include: political and protest posters from the Clay County Civil Rights exhibit featuring Aaron Henry, Fannie Lou Hamer, and a poster advertising a visit made by Civil Rights heroes Dick Gregory and John Lewis to West Point in 1965.

Items in the literature exhibit include books by novelists Richard Wright and Margaret Walker, as well as lesser known writers such as poet Anselm Finch. Writers like John R. Lynch, a military officer and politician, and William Johnson, a barber, had careers in other fields. One of the most interesting pieces from the literature collection,

is the diary of William Johnson, a free black man who lived in pre-Civil War Natchez, discovered by a MSU archivist. Alongside Johnson’s diary, sits a Tavern License (which grants permission to sale alchohol) of his mother, Amy Johnson. Smith said Johnson was embarrassed by his mother and wrote about his embarrassment in his book.

Also featured in the exhibit are images from the Freedom Vote held in 1964. Events like the Freedom Vote, though symbolic, Smith said, helped prepare African Americans for the time when they could legally vote. Smith said one of the goals of the exhibit is to showcase a broad scope of African American life

in the state of Mississippi. “We wanted to show that there was life going on, and lots being accomplished,” Smith said. She also wants the exhibit to show the variety of African American materials the library currently has in its collection which it is always looking to expand. “If anybody has old stuff don’t throw it away,” Smith said. Jennifer Jones, the MSU library graphic artist, who created the exhibit’s graphic logo compromised of African Americans representing the shape of the state, said the initial idea for the logo was rejected. Although rejected, Jones said, she kept returning to her initial idea. Partly, because Smith kept telling her about all the photos she would feature in the exhibit. Jones said with the exhibit featuring a wide variety of photos covering many generations it made sense to create a logo showing the importance and contributions African Americans have made in Mississippi’s history. What Jones wants those who come to visit the exhibit to see, is the sadness but also the hope the exhibit represents. EXHIBIT, 2

Refuge proposes one-dollar increase for full-time access by Mathilda Kwabbi Contributing Writer

The Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee Wildlife Refuge is proposing a dollar increase on Mississippi State University students’ parking permits for yearlong access to the Refuge. According to junior forestry major William Griffin, visitors are usually charged with an entrance fee of $5 a day or $25 a year. However, if the increase is approved, the Refuge will let students with a Mississippi State parking decal in for free. “The one dollar increase to the price of student parking decals will allow a student’s decal to serve as an annual pass to the Noxubee Wildlife Refuge,” Griffin said. “It isn’t a well-known fact, but technically to enter the refuge you must buy a yearly pass, $25 dollars, or a day pass, $5.” The funds from the five dollar increase in parking decals will not only go to granting MSU students access to the Refuge, but will also support daily operations such as trail or ground maintenance,


Reflections The Weather Channel

vehicle upkeep and other operations. According to a press release by freshman council member Blake Williams, most students who took the online survey on whether or not there should be an increase in the charge of an annual parking permits support their change. “I think this is a fantastic idea, and would support up to a $20 increase if needed. I love the Refuge, and paying $20 is cheaper than a year’s permit to the Refuge,” junior Allyson Krebs said. However, Griffin said that any student who does not understand the impact the Refuge has might be difficult to convince to pay an extra dollar; those who have gone to the Refuge will see the benefits and importance of the dollar increase. “It may be hard to convince the students who do not understand the significance or importance of the Refuge to pay the extra dollar. I would tell these students to do some homework. Research all of the important wildlife that lives on our 84,000 acre refuge, or take a drive south and marvel at the beautiful

Paying an

Jenn McFadden, The Reflector

old-growth timber down in the swamps,” Griffin said. On Feb. 15, the Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee Wildlife Refuge was




HI: 69 LO: 45 SKY: Sunny

HI: 69 LO: 45 SKY: Cloudy

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POP: 0%

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established 1940 for of being breeding migratory

on June 14, the purpose a refuge and ground for birds and

FORECAST: We are looking at a beautiful weekend, Bulldogs! This weekend will see cool mornings that will warm up to be nice afternoons. Have a great weekend, Bulldogs!

other wildlife creatures. It also works towards restoring, conserving and managing wildlife, fish, plant resources and their

inhabitants for the benefit of present and future generations. The Refuge protects wildlife, and also provides outdoor activities that people can enjoy. “The Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge is owned and managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service,” Griffin said. “The refuge is about 84,000 acres in size, and is a safe haven for outdoorsmen and wildlife alike. Among other things, the Refuge offers us fishing, hiking, bird watching, kayaking, canoeing and so much more. It is a place where wildlife is respected, protected, and preserved.” According Griffin, the Refuge is also used by the College of Forest Resources at MSU to conduct research. This has led to discoveries on how to keep the water and air clean, preserve wildlife habitats and effectively manage forests in the southeast. “This semester we [freshman council] decided to focus our attention on policies and improvements we can bring to Mississippi State University and the Starkville community,” Williams said.

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Policy: Any person may pick up a single copy of The Reflector for free. Additional copies may be obtained from the Henry Meyer Student Media Center for 25 cents per copy.



EXHIBIT Stephen Middleton, professor and director of MSU’s African American Studies Department, said any exhibit on African Americans whether it concerns civil rights, history or culture should attempt to examine as broad of a perspective as possible. From Middleton’s perspective as a scholar and researcher, he said exhibits like the one in the library can help people look beyond the anger of society’s ills such as, racial or economic disparities while also addressing society’s needs. As director of the African American studies program, Middleton said he encourages all students to study the contributions and achievements African Americans have made in overcoming enslavement and segregation. His hope




is that participation in the African Americans studies program will inspire others to overcome their own obstacles in life. One thing many young people do not realize about the time period, Middleton said, is that many African Americans found opportunity for advancement where they could. People like Ernest Jones, a shoe cobbler in Starkville, who, Middleton said, did not abide by segregation laws serving blacks and whites equally in his store. Other African Americans like Middleton’s 88-year-old mother-in-law aspired to become a teacher and escape the cotton fields working in. Middleton’s mother-in-law became a teacher and taught for over 20 years.

“It’s amazing how these individuals right here out of Mississippi saw something different, inspired for something different and pursued something different,” Middleton said. Middleton said looking at the exhibit will “inspire us to be different from the past.” Middleton said not examining the past and continuing to believe our past mistakes will keep leading to the same mistakes. Therefore, Middleton said he invites others to base their lives on principles which he bases his own life on “to be the difference and stand for something better.” Smith said she welcomes students and groups to come and visit the exhibit. Tours can be made by appointment.

Friday February 10, 2017 10:55 p.m. Student was arrested in Starkville for felony possession of a stolen firearm. Saturday February 11, 2017 1:24 a.m. Student was arrested on 182/Research Park Starkville for DUI and speeding. 1:27 a.m. Employee was arrested on 182/Research Park Starkville for DUI. 11:13 p.m. Student was arrested on Bailey Howell for leaving the scene of an accident, DUI, and minor in possession of alcohol. Justice Court citations were issued. Monday February 13, 2017 7:17 a.m. Student reported his bicycle missing from Griffis Hall, last seen on 02/10/2017 at 5:00 p.m. 11:30 a.m. Employee reported two juveniles stole bikes from a bike rack at Griffis Hall. 12:45 p.m. Student reported recieving harassing text messages from an unknown number. 4:46 p.m. Student reported her vehicle was damaged while parked in the Sanderson Center parking lot.

CORRECTION: Tuesday’s graphic for “MSU welcomes the SEC leadership program” was for the SEC Academic Conference on March 2728 while the story was for the Southeastern Conference Academic Leadership and Development Program from Feb. 22-24.

Congratulations to our newest Health Heroes, the Easy Striders! Elizabeth Blaine, Jenny Davis, Gary Ervin, Lesia Ervin, Courtney Goodson, Joy Graves, Sharon Hewlett, Joan Lucas, Les Potts, Jordan Ramsey, and Don Zant

“We are very encouraging and supportive of one another and check in with each other daily.” Read their full story at



CLASSIFIEDS wPOLICY The deadline for Tuesday’s paper is 3 p.m. Thursday; the deadline for Friday’s paper is 3 p.m. Tuesday. Classifieds are $5 per issue. Student and staff ads are $3 per issue, pre-paid. Lost and found: found items can be listed for free; lost items are listed for standard ad cost. HELP WANTED Boardtown Bikes is seeking a bicycle mechanic. Mechanical expreience and involvement with cycling is preferred. Visit www. to apply. FOR RENT

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Private collectibles for sale: Thousands of WWII military items. (no guns) Pez candy dispensers, Elvis Presley collectibles and much more. Cash only. By appoinment only. Call 901-626-2763 for details.

CLUB INFO The deadline for Tuesday’s paper is 3 p.m. Thursday; deadline for Friday’s paper is 3 p.m. Tuesday. MSU student organizations may place free announcements in Club Info. Information

may be submitted by email to club_info@ with the subject heading “CLUB INFO,” or a form may be completed The Reflector at office in the Student Media Center. A contact name, phone number and requested run dates must be included for club info to appear in The Reflector. MSU GAMER’S GUILD MSU Gamer’s Guild is holding a NBA 2K and Madden Tournament at 2 p.m. Saturday in Butler Hall. For more information contact


An In-Class Distraction


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Experience life on the other side





Parents should protect children from fast food advertising component: parents. The only time parents were mentioned in last week’s article was when it came to the money being spent on the food. I feel like this response is quite obvious, but why can’t parents tell their kids no? McDonald’s can pour billions of dollars into advertisements and toys all they want, but ultimately it is the parent’s responsibility to determine whether or not they should buy the food. We are placing blame on the seller, when we should be placing blame

by Jonathan Bain Staff Writer

A question lingering throughout the United States ever since fast food companies have become a staple in the lives of average Americans is this: should fast food companies be allowed to advertise without restriction? Last week a fellow writer for The Ref lector threw his hat into the ring and wrote an article entitled “McDonald’s should not advertise to children.” I do not wear hats, but I am about to throw Shield your eyes! my proverbial one in the ring, and challenge the claim that fast food companies should be censored. First, I will address some of the claims made within the article, and then I will discuss that ultimately this a freedom of speech issue and censorship will carry unwanted repercussions. The main objective of the article was to Jenn McFadden, The Reflector show that fast food companies, McDonald’s specifically, on the purchaser. This target children in order is no different from to get them hooked on the argument of people the food they serve. claiming that fast food The objection with companies made them this, understandably, is obese. No, they have not. the fact that the food is They offer a product that unhealthy. Some of the you voluntarily purchase. marketing schemes used Another thing the artiby fast food companies cle mentions is the fact are toys and areas for that it doesn’t matter kids to play at within the that fast food companies restaurant. offer healthier options. So, essentially, we have My response to this these evil fast food com- is simple: why? If these panies advertising toys companies offer healthand unhealthy food to ier options, and the parkids, and they should be ents do not take advanstopped, right? Wrong. tage of this, it is not the While I can agree that fault of the company. children lack the cogniClaiming the fault lies tive ability to question with McDonald’s and what their food is made not with those responof, I feel like the arti- sible for purchasing the cle was missing a key food is just a method of

def lection, a way to shuck personal responsibility and blame others for unfortunate decisions you have made. “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” Look familiar? This is the first amendment; the foundation

for which all freedoms spring from. This issue is not only an issue for parents deciding what their kids should, or should not, eat; this is a freedom of speech issue. The Atlantic, a magazine based out of D.C., stated that the government should override freedom of speech and censor these fast food companies. Apart from the fact that any, and all, government censorship is wrong, what are some of the ways this could set a dangerous precedence for you individually? If the government was to shred the f irst amendment in this case, it would leave the door open for them to do

so any t ime they deem “necessary.” This is a classic example of the snowball effect; one minor occurrence could gradually give way to major occurrences. If we demand the government overstep its authority in this scenario and do what is “necessary” for the health of future generat ions, what will they do next? You could wake up one morning to all sodas being recalled, or alcohol being made illegal. I know some of you reading bel ieve this would be a good thing, but what you believe to be good should not be legislated and made law for everyone else to adhere to. I am not against personal health and wellbeing, but I am very much against the government being the ent ity that is going to force me to be so. The aftermath of this would be a classic and simple example of government overreach into the lives of everyday cit izens. Should people try to live a more healthy l ifestyle? Absolutely. Should the government remove all personal choice from the matter and force you to do so? Absolutely not. The principle of self-ownership states that we alone own our bodies and we alone are responsible for the outcome of what we do with our bodies. Like John Adams once said, “Liberty, once lost, is lost forever.” If you are not loving it, then exercise your liberty and seek other opt ions, but don’t demand the government force your viewpoint on everyone else, I am not loving that.

“If Only They Knew...

how absurd this is that I have to sit in a coffee shop and be interviewed to talk about my feelings, because hardly anyone goes and has these conversations elsewhere. No one is ever like, ‘Let’s go get coffee and talk about real s***.’ It’s absurd that in a beautiful way you are doing this, but at the same time, it’s like, come on... opening up should be an everyday thing.” Avani Solanki

Photo by Sarah Dutton | The Reflector, @sedphoto on Instagram

Read Avani’s full interview at If interested in participating contact Sarah Dutton at iotksarah@

CONTACT INFORMATION Editor in Chief/Kaitlin O’Dougherty

Life Editor/Alexandra Hendon


Managing Editor/Devin Edgar

Photography Editor/Sarah Dutton

Online Social Media Editor/Taylor Bowden

News Editor/Emmalyne Kwasny


Advertising Sales/Johnson Cooke


Opinion Editor/Sam Gibson

Graphics Editor/ Jenn McFadden

Circulation/Brie Pruitt

Sports Editor/Dalton Middleton

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Letters to the editor should be sent to the Meyer Student Media Center or mailed to The Reflector, PO Box 5407, Mississippi State, MS. Letters may also be emailed to Letters must include name and telephone number for verification purposes. The editor reserves the right to edit or refuse to publish a letter.


Data collection is an issue of convenience vs. privacy

Chris Lowe is a sophomore majoring in business information systems. He can be contacted at

Google is almost a necessity these days. You cannot feasibly access anything on the internet without a search engine, and Google is universally accepted as the most reliable option by a country mile. However, using this comes with a potentially horrifying consequence: data collection. Google records most of your activity while using its search engine and its affiliated sites, like Youtube. It states in its official privacy page that the information collected includes things you search for, websites you visit, videos you watch, ads you click on or tap, your location, device information, IP address and cookie data. It further claims that it uses this data to do things like help autocomplete your searches and make your Google Maps experience more efficient, but to me, these minor conveniences are nowhere near worth the fact that Google can effectively construct a profile of each of its users that includes everything from their appearance and voice to their habits. Regardless of whether its intentions are benevolent are not, no company should have access to a database this comprehensive. One thing a lot of people tend to forget is that Google is not just a search engine. Their company controls one of the most popular email services, two of the most popular web browsers (Safari and Chrome), and is one of the pioneers in the self-driving car business. They control our favorite video streaming site and help us navigate around unfamiliar places. In almost every way, Google has made our lives more convenient and for that reason, has become one of the most powerful companies in the world. With command over this many sectors in everyday American life, the amount of data they would be able to collect on all of us is astounding. Now, what Google actually does with this information, or at least what we know they do with it, is described

pretty well in an article by Android Central. They state that Google offers “a tailored service to the people buying ad space from Google.” What that means is if a company is attempting to sell something that only a specific audience would be interested in, like a videogame, they can purchase ad space through Google that only shows their ads to people that have activity indicating an interest in them. This is one of the bigger ways that Google makes money, and is a primary reason for many of its services being free. Really, it all ties back into the fact that Google’s model is one of convenience for everyone, and that fosters complacency. As I have stated, I do not take issue with Google’s data collection policies because of ads. I take issue with them because of the mere fact that they exist is a bad omen for the future. If this data were to reach the hands of someone with the wrong intentions or if Google itself were to decide to use them for more than just ad space, our individual privacy could be completely destroyed and we could be manipulated in all kinds of ways. Google might claim that they are responsible with our information, but history has shown that having this kind of power eventually leads to it being abused. In fact, they have already shown that they are willing to abuse it. The New York Times reported in 2013 that, “A German privacy regulator fined Google €145,000 on Monday for the systematic, illegal collection of personal data while it was creating the Street View mapping service…” This included personal emails, pictures and pretty much any other unencrypted data. It had nothing to do with using their services and absentmindedly agreeing to their data collection standards, but was in fact everything to do with literal stealing. Google has painted a very rosy picture of itself in the minds of the American public, but they have shown their willingness to go too far with their power. They may not be Skynet, but the prospect of them becoming a reallife equivalent is much too real to keep ignoring. We must bring awareness to this as a society, because if we wait much longer, we may no longer have the power to do anything about it.



The Reflector is the official student newspaper of Mississippi State University. Content is determined solely by the student editorial staff. The contents of The Reflector have not been approved by Mississippi State University.


The Reflector staff strives to maintain the integrity of this paper through accurate and honest reporting. If we publish an error we will correct it. To report an error, call 325-7905.





Lacrosse gets ready for spring season

Bulldogs seek new, committed members by Amber Dodd Staff Writer

Today, lacrosse is regarded as the fastest growing sport in America, specifically in the southern region. Mississippi State caught on to the sport’s presence early on. The intramural sport was established on campus originally in 1971, but with issues with a concrete following and consistent flow of players, it was not until 2008 when the team made its permanent appearance on campus. The team is led by Caleb Sachdev, a junior from Tupelo majoring in biomedical engineering. He is a six-year veteran and welcomes those who want to play with no experience and those with years under their belt. As lacrosse grows in the southern region, one of Sachdev’s main goals is to educate and spread the lacrosse culture amongst the Starkville community. “I just want our community to know we’re here,” Sachdev said. “Lacrosse is the fastest growing sport and it seems like Mississippi isn’t picking up. We feel like

it’s our duty to spread its culture in anyway.” With an adamant presence of football, basketball and baseball in southern culture, the club team does see outside forces that hinder their growth on campus. Public relations board member Joshua Peck, a seven-year veteran as a midfielder from Austin, Texas, understands that participating in one of the poorest states of the country could be another reason their jumpstart is rough. “Because of Title IX, we must fi le both a men’s and women’s team,” Peck said. “Mississippi is one of the poorest states so I definitely think that may have something to do with its growth in state because lacrosse is not cheap.” On average, the lowest an equipped lacrosse stick that has the basics to use during matches is $40, and without the school’s help in funding and strict spending for struggling college students, it is a hassle for club sports to suffice the necessary items to participate. The club team shows a strong presence, competing amongst other southern teams in tournament-style competitions. Mississippi

State’s lacrosse team competes in the Division II Deep South Conference of the National Collegiate Lacrosse League. They

South Conference tournament, where they lost 2-1 against UAB in the championship. Since then, the team has trouble holding on to

“We try to attract players who are committed to the game who come here. We

have players from all over. We just don’t have kids who’ve had lacrosse be a dedicated sport.”

-President Caleb Sachdev

play against well known schools such as Mercer, UT-Chattanooga and Tennessee Tech in their respective divisions. Outof-conference games are played against Divison I lacrosse teams such as Auburn, Alabama and LSU. Their most successful run was in the 2014 Deep

players with commitment. “We try to attract players who are committed to the game who come here,” Sachdev said. “We have players from all over. We just don’t have kids who’ve had lacrosse be a dedicated sport.” Sophomore Michael Gilbert, a Nashville native

and chemical engineering major, discussed the issues of keeping players intrigued and dedicated as school work and the seasons begin to intertwine into their academic schedules. “They’ll come and show up to practices,” Gilbert said. “But after so many, they’ll say their grades are suffering. We only practice two to three times a week but I understand.” The trio wants to make sure their club has a set foundation before they graduate from Mississippi State. To avoid their past issues of being a consistent team, the current team wants to make sure their club shows itself

EXPIRES 05/04/2017

to onlookers with professionalism and opportunities to play lacrosse. “I just want make to sure the incoming freshmen have the same opportunities I have. I want us to keep the ball rolling to avoid leaving it in disarray.” Peck said. “I want it to be something established and welcoming.” Despite all their adversities, the Mississippi State lacrosse club looks forward to the 2017 spring season and are excited to see more people seek interest to join in the growing sport. The club will open their spring season against rival UAB on Feb. 18 at UAB.

EXPIRES 05/04/2017



Imagine a world where food is not a privilege, but a right. A world where there is room at the table for everyone. Where food technologies are developed, perfected and shared to feed a growing population that will reach 9.5 billion by 2050.

EXPIRES 05/04/2017

EXPIRES 05/04/2017

Imagine a world where the spark of an idea grows into a solution that molds the future. We are, at Mississippi State University, where we ring true.






Bully’s BULLET


Events happening across campus!









Bulldog Family Weekend

Basketball MSU vs. Florida

President’s Day

Music Maker Talent Show

GreenZone Initiative Training

Baseball MSU vs. Western Illinois

National Love Your Pet Day!

Men’s Basketball MSU vs. Ole Miss

Miss Maroon & White Pageant

Baseball MSU vs. Western Illinois and Texas Tech








Mentalist Paul Ramsay’s Mind Games

NEDA Walk by Psi Chi

Women’s Basketball MSU vs. Tennessee

National Strawberry Day!

National Public Sleeping Day

US Poet Laureate Public Reading and Conversation

Softball MSU vs. Alabama State



Talent Show




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