WATCH Holler co-founders Holly McCall & Justin Kanew – and Howard Garrett – speak out against a Franklin ordinance that seeks to regulate citizens’ First Amendment right to peaceable assembly.
Williamson County residents gathered on the Public Square in Franklin on Friday to call for Speaker Casada to resign from the legislature completely, immediately.
There were more fireworks at the capitol today as police arrested a group of young voters who were again there to protest the bust of the KKK’s first Grand Wizard Nathan Bedford Forrest, which remains prominently featured in the lobby.
This was not their first clash with Speaker Glen Casada. Previously Casada and Justin Jones, a leader of the group, had a run-in after Chief of Staff Cade Cothren told Jones that the reason Casada wasn’t getting their emails was because Jones had misspelled “Capitol” in the email address.
We obtained proof that this was not true.
This time things escalated further as Jones threw a drink at Speaker Casada as he fled into the elevator.
Physical contact of any kind is something nobody condones. Jones and Jeneisha Harris were both arrested by troopers, and according to Natalie Jones of the Tennessean Jones has been charged with 2 counts of simple assault for hitting Casada and Rep. Debra Moody with his drink, as well as with disorderly conduct.
This confrontation comes on the heels of Casada cutting the mics of Rep. Mike Stewart and Rep. Bo Mitchell today as they were speaking up for a group of peaceful women Casada recently had escorted out of a hearing presided over by Rep. David Byrd. His office says the women were “disrupting the legislative process”. Video shows they were not, and that the hearing was actually in recess when they were taken out by troopers.
Before today’s arrests, Jeneisha Harris had asked Rep. Terri Lynn Weaver to sign their petition to have the bust of the KKK’s first Grand Wizard removed from the state capitol. Weaver would not sign, defending her position with a familiar line:
“Some of my best friends are black.”
After being asked if she’s racist or if she will sign a petition for NBF bust removal, Rep. Terri Lynn Weaver tells protesters at Capitol some of her best friends are black. #tnleg pic.twitter.com/MYjgWyWs5B
— Natalie Allison (@natalie_allison) February 28, 2019
It’s worth noting that Weaver previously used a similar defense when she was called out for posting a Halloween picture of herself with her pastor posing in blackface as Aunt Jemima, which Weaver captioned:
“Aunt Jemima, you is so sweet.”
Weaver’s defense when confronted about that?
“I’m the least racist of anyone. Some of my greatest friends are black.”
Maybe one of those friends should have a little chat with her.
If you agree having black friends doesn’t make supporting having a KKK Grand Wizard’s bust in the state capitol, feel free to holler at Weaver HERE.
And Casada is calling anyone who disagrees with him a “radical”, but if you think wanting a KKK Grand Wizard bust removed from the state capitol and an admitted sexual molester to step down is the opposite of “radical”, holler at Casada HERE.
At the capitol on Thursday, Speaker Glen Casada had a run-in with a group of young engaged and active citizens who have become regulars in the halls of the Tennessee legislature expressing their disgust with the bust of Nathan Bedford Forrest, the first Grand Wizard of the KKK, which is still featured prominently in the lobby.
Speaker Casada slipped out a back door. The trooper initially wouldn’t let reporters out into the hallway where the protesters were waiting. He finally moved out of the way after @schelzig demanded they let us out. #tnleg pic.twitter.com/Zvj1Df6o09
— Natalie Allison (@natalie_allison) February 21, 2019
The group had been trying to schedule a meeting with Casada for weeks. In emails obtained by The Holler, Justin Jones, one of the leaders, emails Casada and his chief of staff Cade Cothren with reporters copied on the email asking to schedule 20 minutes for the group to come in and plead their case for why the bust should be removed:
After repeated attempts to communicate, Cothren finally responds to an email saying “it looks like we can get you in during the first week of March”:
Jones then immediately responds affirming that date works, and asking for Casada’s position on the bust so they can be prepared when they get there:
A few days go by with silence from Cothren, so Jones replies again:
Two days later, on Thursday, the group showed up in the lobby to talk to Cothren in person. The video can be seen below, in which Cothren asks to see Jones’ phone, then tells Jones he had the spelling of “capitol” wrong in his emails and makes the claim that that’s why he hasn’t responded.
As you can see in the emails above, that simply is not the case.
The claim is even more preposterous considering Jones was responding to an email Cothren had already sent.
In the video, Jones then sees Casada coming down the stairs and asks him directly for a meeting, to which Casada replies “we’re meeting!” before pushing Jones, who had slid in front of Casada’s path, aside.
Troopers then forcibly removed Jones from the door Casada disappeared behind as Jones shouted through it.
Nobody was hurt, and things immediately calmed down as Jones and fellow protestors, including Jeneisha Harris, talked to the troopers, who assured them they were there to protect everyone.
As they talk to the trooper Rep. David Byrd can be seen walking by, which Jones points out might be something they should be more concerned with considering he has apologized on tape for sexual misconduct with high school players he coached, as CNN pointed out yesterday.
Casada can be seen in one of our previous videos about that topic lying on tape about meeting with those victims also. Anyone else sensing a theme here?
If you are, holler at Casada HERE to tell him and his office to stick to the truth, meet with the protestors, pull down the bust, and get rid of Rep. David Byrd, the admitted sex offender Casada promoted to chair of an education subcommittee.
When @GlenCasada put his hands on us- the trooper said “he had a right to defend himself.”
When Rep. Byrd admitted on tape to sexual assault- Casada said “he had a right to due process.”
It seems the only ppl who have rights in TN are privileged white men who abuse their power.
— Justin Jones (@brotherjones_) February 23, 2019