What was designed to be an event to honor the 1968 sanitation strikers turned into the City of Memphis and its leaders being “dragged” by CNN commentator and political analyst Angela Rye.

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Political commentator Angela Rye reacts to news that Trump surrogate Omarosa Manigault Newman was fired from her position at the White House.

Before her appearance at the Orpheum Theatre for the city’s #IAmMemphis commemorative event Saturday morning, Rye met with local activists and advocates who have been on the ground fighting for causes such as #BlackLivesMatter, education and economic inequity.

It was all downhill — or should we say uphill — from there. Rye took her insight from the prescheduled meeting and delivered a message that surprised the city and the event’s organizers.

In the words of Blu Cantrell, Rye “hit ’em up style.” Her words were — as the church says — sharp like a two-edged sword.

“Memphis, be true to what you said on paper,” said Rye before rolling down a checklist of unresolved issues city officials and civic leaders haven’t addressed while it promotes “tough on crime” policies.

Those familiar with Rye’s style — from her CNN appearances and her work with the Congressional Black Caucus — know she’s a hard hitter, familiar with speaking truth to power.

In an interview with The Commercial Appeal, Mayor Jim Strickland (13,000 Twitter followers) pulled a Mariah Carey on Rye (298,000 followers).

While Strickland feigned ignorance about who the city’s invited guest actually is, as shown in several posts and reactions on the interwebs …

… in the end, Rye kicked it with her crew at the famous Charlie Vergos’ Rendevous in Downtown Memphis, unbothered.

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