What few people know is that a small rural area in the state of Mississippi was nuked by President Lyndon B. Johnson. On October 22, 1964 at precisely 10 AM local time a small nuclear device was detonated underground, near the small community of Baxterville in Lamar County in the southern part of the state. Warning were given to some 400 residents of the area a few hours before the blast and $10 given to each family for the incontinence caused by their evacuation. That day, I was a student at the University of Southern Mississippi some 30 miles away from ground zero. Some of the students there reported feeling the ground shake that morning. I, on the other hand, was in my off campus apartment with a lucky co-ed I met the night before and did feel the earth shake for an entirely different reason, unrelated to the nuke. Many have wondered why the Mississippi site was selected to be the only area east of the Mississippi River to ever experience a nuclear test. Preparations for the actual test at the "Salmon Site" were begun during the Kennedy administration and continued during the Johnson years following the assignation of JFK. There was little love lost between the State and the Kennedy's due to the problems at Ole Miss a few years before. And President Johnson was keenly aware that the good citizens of Mississippi were unlikely to vote for him in the upcoming election. An election that would come some 12 days after he nuked the state. Were both Kennedy and Johnson trying to send a clear message to the Governor of MS and it's people not to mess with their masters in Washington? I would say, only history could answer that question; but obviously history has passed it by. And until this day the real reason for the selection of the "Salmon Site" remains a mystery cloaked in conspiracy theories. Should you wish to check one of the sources for this piece follow this link Nuclear explosion in Lamar County Mississippi!
To this very day I remain pissed off at both Kennedy and Johnson for what I saw as a punitive action by both presidents against the State and citizens of Mississippi for political reasons. So in order to get my blood pressure down I give you the below satirical joke. Enjoy!
|MISSISSIPPI STATE FLAG|
President Lyndon Johnson was in the Oval Office when his telephone rang. "Hello, President Johnson” a heavily accented southern voice said. "This is Jimmy Boy, down here at Bump's Catfish Shack, in Vicksburg, and I am callin' to tell ya’ll that we are officially declaring war on y'all!" "Well Jimmy Boy," Lyndon replied, "This is indeed important news! How big is your army?" "Right now," said Jimmy Boy, after a moments calculation "there is myself, my cousin Tom, my next-door-neighbor and brother Gerald, and the whole dart team from JD's Bait Shop. That makes eight or maybe nine depending if Bump can close the store. Johnson paused. "I must tell you Jimmy Boy that I have one million men in my army waiting to move on my command." "Wow," said Jimmy Boy. "I'll have to call ya back!" Sure enough, the next day, Jimmy Boy called again. “Mr. Johnson, the war is still on! We have managed to acquire some infantry equipment!" "And what equipment would that be Jimmy Boy?" Lyndon asked. "Well sir, we have two combines, a bulldozer, and my brother Mike’s farm tractor." President Johnson sighed. "I must tell you Jimmy Boy, that I have 16,000 tanks and 14,000 armored personnel carriers. Also I've increased my army to one and a half million since we last spoke." "Lord above", said Jimmy Boy, "I'll be getting backto ya." Sure enough, Jimmy Boy called again the next day. “President Johnson! I am sorry to have to tell you that we have had to call off this here war." "I'm sorry to hear that" said Lyndon. "Why the sudden change of heart?" Well, sir," said Jimmy Boy, "we've all sat ourselves down and had a long chat over sweet tea, catfish, greens and pie and come to realize that there's just no way we can feed that many prisoners."