“Whenever I hear anyone arguing for slavery, I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally.”
— Abraham Lincoln
A couple of weeks ago, the state of Mississippi officially ratified the Thirteenth Amendment. For those of you who don’t know:
“Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”
Yeah, slavery. The Magnolia State — who brought us such hits as “The KKK: From Dixie With Love” and “The Riding into Jackson Blues” — apparently suffered a massive “clerical error” and has technically been slavery-friendly for the last 148 years.
The Thirteenth Amendment was ratified by the United States in 1865, you know, when Abraham Lincoln took enough time out of his day from killing vampires to abolish the practice of slavery. Apparently, Mississippi didn’t get the memo, since they didn’t even work toward ratifying it until 1995. Nineteen-ninety-fucking-five!
Apparently, either no one realized slavery was still legal in Mississippi or no one cared, and given the state’s history I’m leaning toward the latter, because it took a viewing of Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln to prompt two University of Mississippi Medical Center professors to look into it. Dr. Ranjan Batra and a colleague discovered that Mississippi’s then-Secretary of State Dick Molpus failed to officially notify the U.S. archivist, as required.
Batra’s colleague, Ken Sullivan, then notified the current Secretary of State C. Delbert Hosemann, Jr., who then contacted the U.S. National Archives and made Mississippi’s ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment official, stopping Molpus’ diabolical plan dead in it’s tracks.
According to an unnamed source, when the news was announced, Molpus was bitch-slapped by the ghost of Abraham Lincoln.