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  • Writer's pictureGregory N. Austin

Throwing Florida Overboard?

Imagine a State whose ambitious governor fancies himself a viable candidate for the office of President of the United States, while taking a position that supports Vladimir Putin’s view of international law.

Imagine a sovereign U.S. state that continues to suffer from nature’s wrath in the form of stronger hurricanes and frequent coastal flooding due to sea level rise. Now imagine that state's leadership (Governor and Federal Senators) voting against federal legislation that attempts to address the causes of nature's new fury but demands federal funds to repair the damage. The same state has been accused in the past of actually banning the terms “climate change” or “global warming” from their official state documents.

Imagine a state that empties libraries instead of filling them. Imagine that content control is in the hands of the state, not local school boards or county governments. Look back in time and remember that history has shown us that first they ban books, then they burn books, then they burn people.

Imagine a state that now wants control of the curriculum taught at public schools and universities. Imagine the state regulating black history teaching by scrutinizing lesson materials to ensure white children are not made to feel uncomfortable. As if young people are not able to understand the suffering the blacks were subjected to throughout much of our Nation’s history. The states attempt to control thought is hysterical in my opinion, but to show history outside what is true is inexcusable as a teaching procedure.

Imagine a state with a past history of mass gun violence working hard to expand “open carry” laws to allow more guns to be accessible to the public with few restrictions. Remember, the more guns in a society the more deaths by guns. Have people forgotten that in the early western states, “law men” like Wyatt Earp, Bat Masterson and Wild Bill Hickok ALL took away guns in those towns where they were sheriff or marshal. All done with the mayor’s blessing!

Imagine a state where Corporations must now have their positions on important cultural issues that impact their clients, customers and employees “blessed” by the state government before they can be said publicly. A state where private and public corporations must keep looking over their shoulders at the governor’s office for fear of impacting their tax bills or other forms of state control. No state employee is safe from it’s governors wrath, including local prosecutors, schools, and colleges.

Imagine a state where a doctor must out of fear of prosecution, consult a lawyer before examining a female patient with health issues related to her pregnancy. Further, imagine that the state desires ultimate control over a woman’s pregnancy rights altogether and forever.

Imagine living in a state where well established medical science on vaccinations is now subject to ridicule (despite successful usage for over 200 years). The U.S. have over 1.1 million Americans who have died of COVID - too many of whom have failed to be vaccinated. And let us not forget that Fox "News" relentlessly voiced negativity over vaccinations on their air, yet as a corporate policy mandated employees be fully vaccinated for COVID.

Imagine the governor of a state that uses (possibly illegally) his own state’s tax payer dollars to transport legal immigrants seeking asylum from a different state to yet a third state just to perform a political stunt. The governor’s strategy was to use innocent immigrants as just another tool to politically divide us. That is a shame because where in heavens name would Americans be without the past history of immigration?

Finally, imagine a State whose ambitious governor fancies himself a viable candidate for the office of President of the United States, while taking a position that supports Vladimir Putin’s view of international law by proclaiming to “info-tainer” Tucker Carlson of Fox “News” what is going on in Ukraine right now is simply a “territorial dispute”. Imagine the good people of the state (many of whom know personally the costs associated with WWII) struggling to support their governor’s isolationist position on the defense of democracy. Those good people know that the U.S. stands for Liberty and Freedom in America. We promote it for those democratic UN countries, NATO and the EU countries. They are all our allies by moral and treaty commitments.

So, by now you no longer need to imagine. You know the state I am writing about is Florida and the items mentioned above are NOT theoretical positions – THEY ARE REAL. The Governor of Florida is Ron DeSantis, and although he has not formally announced, it is clear that he will be Donald Trump’s “Mini Me” in 2024. Based on the facts above, it is clear that the Florida governor does not align his positions in accordance with the U.S. constitution and the rule of law. The founding fathers profoundly disliked kings and autocrats. They made that clear in their creation of the 240 year old document that has hereto fore served us so well. They granted the people, via checks and balances, to govern their everyday life. They put the people in charge of their destiny – not a state run by autocrats or authoritarians.

Florida must begin relying on science to develop comprehensive planning for stronger hurricanes, sea weed, and coastal flooding. With a science denying, self-appointed autocrat like DeSantis in control, outcomes become threatened by a lack of acknowledgment by their leader. (Remember how Donald Trump said that COVID would magically go away?) Most autocrats have privacy fences of money and power, and there is no limit to how far they will go to attain more. The reader must study our pledge of allegiance to the flag, the rule of law under our U.S. Constitution and most of all demand accountability for everyone, no matter who. Americans do not take kindly toward despotism. In 240 years we have never accepted authoritarianism as a viable way to govern. Those that feel Viktor Orban or Vladimir Putin offer a better way to govern are free to emigrate from America to one of those countries. Please get in line behind Tucker Carlson!

For those who stay they must honor and support a duly elected president (2020) until his term ends. I have no doubt that it will please a just God and also the judgement of history.

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