DeSantis: Paradise, Palm Trees, & Prejudice


Since 2019 Ron DeSantis has been the 46th governor of Florida. He went into the governor’s mansion as an obsequious sycophant; he is trying to leave as President of the United States of America. All of the ways he followed Trump like a lost puppy with one leg, they don’t compare to the extremist views, speeches and now.. laws that he has been implementing in the state of Florida. These moves have dismantled education and waged war against the LGBTQ community. His newest law goes beyond homosexuality and trans folks. He is attacking the very beliefs that this country was founded on. Any man, woman, or pedophile that campaigns on more freedom, bet your sweet boopy he plans on taking that said freedom.

Despite his free state navigation through the Coronavirus Pandemic; a move which gave him quite a bit of love from the people of Florida and throughout the country, his aggressive views on the LGBTQ community have come with a fear not seen since U.S. Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin and his Red Scare.

(noted: most public schools stopped teaching McCarthyism)

One of the most dangerous things about DeSantis’ views on the LGBTQ is the fact that he has been able to influence by using children as his moral rational. He has found support throughout the state of Florida and beyond; especially when it comes to specific issues of gender, child safety, and the trans community.

As if his Parental Rights in Education Act (also known as “Don’t Say Gay”) wasn’t deplorable enough. It isn’t just to keep pornographic materials out of the school, but to alos force morals. It was used to fire a well loved and respected Hernando County trans middle school teacher, Ashlee Renczkowski. It was also used to put an elementary school teacher named, Jenna Barbee, also in Hernando, on investigation because she showed a Disney movie (Strange World, rated PG) that featured a gay character. Even before this incident, Barbee was resigning from the school. This new climate is driving away the caring educators. These acts have sparked a petition on to have the school board member who called for the investigation, Shannon Rodriguez, to be removed from her position. Today, the petition has over thirty thousand signatures.

Most recently, DeSantis’ “Don’t Say Gay Bill” has been implemented as a weapon against free thinking, free speech, and literature. In Miami, Dade County, the former and first National Youth Poet Laureate, Amanda Gorman was under attack for her poem and now book “The Hill We Climb.” One parent made a claim that Gorman’s poem promotes “hate speech.” I might call this unnamed person illiterate if they think that poem promotes hate of any kind. Gorman was a little more eloquent on her Instagram page:

“I’m gutted. Because of one parent’s complaint, my inaugural poem, The Hill We Climb, has been banned from an elementary school in Miami-Dade County, Florida.”

Amanda Gorman’s Instagram page

In that same post Gorman went on to say,

“I wrote The Hill We Climb so that all young people could see themselves in a historical moment. Ever since, I’ve received countless letters and videos from children inspired by The Hill We Climb to write their own poems. Robbing Children of the chance to find their voices in literature is a violation of their right to free thought and free speech.”

Amanda Gorman’s Instagram page

There is also bill (HB 837) which helped shield businesses and insurance companies from lawsuits. The bill conveniently came during a rush of claims due to the destruction caused by Hurricane Ian. DeSantis’ newest bill, “Physicians Freedom of Speech,” doesn’t just target the LGBTQ. This bill will allow insurance companies and doctors to opt out of participation or payment for certain health care services all on the basis of conscience and moral based objections.

Some folks are claiming that the law goes against the Hippocratic Oath of doctors; it does. However, in 1973, our lovely US Supreme Court rejected the oath as a guide of medical ethics and practices. So it is not a legal binding oath therefore it puts DeSantis’ newest bill on the right side of the law, despite the law’s obstinate morals and ethics.

DeSantis is an ambitious religious zealot. He has his own ideas of what this country should look like. He has no interest in what this country was supposed to be. His idea of religious freedom is picking what sector of Christianity you are going to be. He probably doesn’t even believe that Jesus of Nazareth was a Jew. This Italian is more akin to Benito Mussolini than his great-great-grandmother, Luigia Colucci. Colucci arrived on Ellis Island a poor, illiterate immigrant in 1917. More importantly, an immigrant who was almost denied access to our country based on the Immigration Act of 1917. That law held a restriction on “undesirable” immigrants. It wouldn’t allow illiterate people to enter the United States. According to DeSantis’ voting record, he would have barred his own great-great-nonna from entering the country.

If I’m going to make an enemy, I’m going to make an enemy that counts. I will not put my energy on the person who cut me off in traffic during Monday rush hour. Won’t get mad at the person who always gets my order wrong at the pizza joint. DeSantis is an enemy that is worth our lives and nation. The defeat that could affect positive change in our world.

As my friend and colleague, National Beat Poet Laureate Ron Whitehead wrote,

“I will not bow Down America.

I will not Bow Down

  to your Government

to your Religion.

I will not Bow Down America

to your materialism

to your International Corporations

to your Religious Shrines

your Stock Markets

your Shopping Malls.

I will not Bow Down America

to your Coal Mines

to your Power Plants.

I will not go crawling down the deep shafts at midnight.

I will not Bow Down America

to your invasion of privacy

to your moral absolutes

your religious political might.”

Ron Whitehead: excerpt from “I Will Not Bow Down”

I will not bow down to DeSantis, I will not bow to anyone. I’ll serve freedom, I will serve my countrymen, and I will serve my family. DeSantis is the choice that I know could make or break this country of it’s God given freedoms. No matter what “God” or Gods you believe in.

Choose wisely and choose with education, not a party platform.