With the holiday weekend almost upon us, four more beaches are being closed on the Mississippi coast because of toxic algae. The Department of Environmental Quality announced last night that two in Biloxi and two in Ocean Springs are now on the list of beaches where it's not considered safe to go into the water. The addition of Edgewater Beach, Biloxi West Central Beach, Front Beach and Shearwater Beach brings to 16 the number of Mississippi beaches that are closed.
The Highway Patrol is launching a new traffic safety campaign during this long Fourth of July weekend. It's called Drive Right Mississippi. There's a double meaning with drivers being reminded that slower traffic should stay in the right lane -- and that all motorists should make the right decisions as they travel through the state. State troopers say drivers using the left lane impede the flow of traffic, and motorists who come up behind them get impatient and sometimes cause accidents when they try to pass in the right lane.
A vegan food company is asking a federal judge to intervene over a new state law that cracks down on meat terminology on food packaging. The law, which took effect Monday, bans sellers of plant-based foods from using phrases like "vegan burgers" and "meatless hotdogs." Violators face a one-thousand-dollar fine and up to a year in prison. The law is now being challenged by Upton's Naturals and the Plant Based Foods Association, who argue the law stifles competition and violates their First Amendment right to free speech. They're hoping a federal judge will temporarily stop the law from being enforced.
The Vicksburg National Military Park tells an important story about the Civil War. And it'll soon be able to show people where battles were fought leading up to the siege of Vicksburg. The state is transferring the Champion Hill battlefield in Hinds County to the National Park Service, with battlefields in Port Gibson and Raymond also scheduled to become part of the military park. The Mississippi Department of Archives and History is turning over about 800 acres at Champion Hill, where 54-thousand soldiers fought a key battle in 1863.
On this July 3rd edition of "Gulf Coast Mornings with Kelly Bennett and Uncle Henry", we also discussed the Nike controversy, fireworks safety, and much more...