What is more of a concern to Ron DeSantis are the salaries of his cronies, the first responders who patrol the park for LGBT folk, allegedly "making sure they are not raping children." The move by DeSantis is the latest in a series of moves, including attacking African American education in schools and creating a fascist-style "don’t say gay bill" which prevents students from learning about LGBT issues in grades K–12.
All of these things can be considered national news because Ron DeSantis is eyeing a 2024 presidential run and is one of the leading contenders. DeSantis embodies the culture war with a vengeance, harkening back to a time when civil rights were not available to all and, even further, to an undemocratic society. America seems to be heading in the wrong direction after the post-truth era and the gutting of the civil rights law a decade ago. The gutting of civil rights culminated in the election of Donald Trump.
The battle for public spaces is at the forefront of the culture war. Too many people seem content with a white-washed America, where blacks act as servants and gays hide in the shadows, never to be mentioned. America should not let itself sink into this morose, because it could be even worse than in the 1950s. When progress is put on the chopping block, people can get out of hand and go too far in the other direction. I fear living in a society that glorifies banning books and using newspapers as kindling instead of reading them.
We need to be told that black lives matter. And we need to accept that LGBT people are part of America. This includes black and LGBT education in schools. I hail from "the great state of Massachusetts," according to Senator Elizabeth Warren, where the latest Republican candidate threatened to "rule with an iron fist."
I think I would hate to live in Florida where freaks aren’t even given lip service. I have visited Florida twice, and the experience left me with a strong impression. It is not a place that I’d like to see sink into the abyss. At least DeSantis acknowledged there is some beauty in his effort to save the Everglades from exploitation, where there might be some positive difference that he does not share with the former president.
We have to remember the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, only the second deadliest shooting in recent years perpetrated against LGBT folks. The bloodshed there is something that I think about not infrequently. History education is so important, especially in regard to underrepresented groups. We must not lose sight of what is happening in terms of guns and violence against LGBT people. If we do, we risk becoming the next victims, or, as Beto O'Rourke says, "[we will] die in our sleep."
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