Much smaller crowd at the Tennessee Capitol today for the reopen rally, but @RepMartinDaniel is in attendance. He’s one of at least 2 other legislators who have sent letters to @GovBillLee asking him to lift restrictions. (Lee has set May 1 as tentative start date for that)
This woman, Misty Smith, is a home health nurse in Nashville but she is announcing that “all our hospitals are sitting empty.” (Tennessee reports there have been 724 coronavirus hospitalizations)
Today’s reopen rally organizer Steve Hasty of Murfreesboro says what he misses most is sitting in restaurants and getting free drink refills.
“I hate having to get two iced teas in the drive thru,” he says.
New Gov. @BillLeeTN before speaking at the same MLK Day event as @RevDrBarber. "I think he would think we have much to do," Lee says of King. Asked about wage inequality, Lee says raising minimum wage is not "the approach," but "creating opportunity" is.
Gov. @BillLeeTN gets some applause from the audience here when he says he wants to focus on reentry programs as part of his criminal justice reform efforts. He tells the story he frequently referenced while campaigning about mentoring a teen in an urban neighborhood.
So @RevDrBarber is saying God commanded nations/government to take care of their poor, etc., not individuals, which is sort of the opposite of what @BillLeeTN says about government not solving our problems. I'm guessing he is uncomfortable sitting on stage behind Barber.
Demonstrators are occupying the entrance to CoreCivic, a Nashville-based private prison operator that contracts with ICE. They've shut down multiple entrances, set up tents & replaced CCA/Tennessee flag with "No borders." Employees are just starting to arrive.
They say they're staying out here until CoreCivic is abolished. Demonstrators told me they're prepared to remain out here for days. They also have a trampoline out here. They've been out here for about an hour and cops are just now arriving.
"We have no intention of leaving," said the Rev. Jeannie Alexander. "It's a nonviolent, peaceful resistance." Look closely and you'll see a person dangling and taking photos from a very tall tripod if they made. That person is up there to stay, Jeannie said.
BREAKING: at least 3 dead after a man opened fire in a Waffle House in Antioch. He was naked. A patron wrestled his rifle away from him. Person of interest, Travis Reinking, 29, of IL, still at large.
Chuck Cordero, 50, works at this Waffle House but was there last night when he was off. He was in the parking lot about to go in when shooter pulled up. "I couldn't run I was so scared. I was crawling on the ground." 4 dead now, 4 wounded.
"He did not say anything. He pulled up, got out of his car and was all business." Witness tells me he fired several rounds from parking lot before entering restaurant around 3:25 a.m.