Ricin Giving Memphis a Bad Name?

(Memphis) For some time Wednesday, Memphis was linked to ricin laced letters that were sent to a US Senator and the President.

Eventually the FBI revealed the letters were sent from Tupelo, MS and only postmarked in Memphis.

“It’s now clear that it wasn’t a Memphian. It’s bad either way you put it,” said Mayor A C Wharton Thursday.

Some say Memphis being in the national news linked to the ricin scare and events like the KKK rally last month take its toll on the city’s image.

“The branding of our city is very important.  We got to have a positive image in the nation to be able to sell our city to investors, to employers and to new residents. We need to grow the city with new people,” said Paul Morris with the Downtown Memphis Commission.

“I’ve traveled over the country since then and Memphis has received nothing but praise about the way it was handled both in terms of controlling the event but also in terms of the mass of over 100 people to celebrate the positive things,” said Wharton about the KKK Rally.

Most would claim Memphis is making the news for many of the right reasons.

Last week, Memphis Music was featured at the White House. And the city was recently featured in Forbes.

“We don’t like negative stories. We think they are over weighed by the positive stories. We’ve got the Grizzlies, the Memphis grizzlies playing in downtown Memphis in the playoffs. That’s going to get a lot of national news coverage. Forbes just featured Memphis as one of the top emerging downtowns in the nation,” said Morris.

“These negative stories really don’t have anything to do with Memphis. All those stories are about people from outside of Memphis coming here and causing bad stories but the things going on in Memphis are positive,” added Morris.

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