The American Tyrant
-Nicolas La Torre Miranda
In a year where internationally there are screams for justice and liberty, in the supposedly land of the free we see the contrary. More precisely in the state where supposedly the most Pro-America governor is doing «a fantastic job».
It must be said that Florida governor Ron DeSantis is the antithesis of what’s good or right or pious by all means. Even for what is the rule of law and the constitution, he seems to be above it all. There are 3 quick points I’d like to address. First, the governor’s anti-riot law.
Second, his banning of Critical Race Theory in schools. Third, his embracing of the “Don’t say Gay” bill that affects some of the most vulnerable in our society. These 3 jewels are examples of why we should be warned about the current governor and possible future presidential candidate.
First, let’s look at the anti riot law. Passed by the Republican majority and signed by the governor, it was then struck down temporarily by a federal judge.
The reason is that it “encourages discriminatory and arbitrary law enforcement”. And for a good reason, the key elements in such bill are that if a demonstration is defined as a riot by law enforcement (3 or more people willfully in a place assisting each other in a violent or disorderly manner and causing injury damage or the imminent possibility of both) they can enact the following things: If a protest suddenly turns violent by even the actions of only 3 people, everybody present is guilty, does not matter if you were present and somebody alongside you acted badly.
Detainees will also face difficulties in having a quick release from jail, even from getting bail since this is considered a grave crime.
Clearly this law was challenged and the judge struck it down because of the lack of transparency on defining what is a riot and because its statutes go past the boundaries of the constitution. When the Cuban demonstrations happened in Florida that derailed traffic and caused disturbances such law was not applied. But we suppose hypocrisy does not exist in Florida.
Second, there is the banning of Critical Race Theory in public education. While this may seem as a sound move to one side of the spectrum, it should be quite alarming to everybody. On one side DeSantis has banned something he disagrees with while on the same action pushing for the “teaching of the evils of communism”.
DeSantis’ Stop WOKE Act and his teaching curriculum represents a red flag for all Americans and people who believe in a balanced, impartial, and critical thought-provoking education.
To sum up Critical Race Theory, it is about focusing on the history of race relations in a cross-disciplinary manner as to analyze the effects that colonialism, racism and hierarchies of power had and continue to have in America. While some of the characteristics of this may be controversial and debatable by no means should it be “canceled”.
Just like we should also teach the negative things of the communist regimes and history, we should also study the negative things of western history. However, it seems that the governor rather wants to promote an anti-left agenda in his education campaign rather than have a legitimate discourse on communism and its evils but also its goods (which there also were).
The governor and his supporters may call CRT indoctrination that’s divisive. However, the term indoctrination can be swapped with the term education in any matter.
In the end it is merely subjective, which is why it is important to have an enriched discussion that involves being aware of the multiple facets of history and perspectives. All things in life that have a complex background and are divisive when touched, which is why it is important from a young age to learn how to cope with those subjects.
Third, the Florida legislature has passed a bill supported by the governor known as the “Parental Rights in Education Bill” also known as the “Don’t Say Gay Bill”. This is because House Bill 1557 has polarized the public opinion where its proponents baptize it as the first name and its opponents as the second one respectively.
An overview of its characteristics are the following: Teachers may not discuss with students from grades K-3 anything about sexual orientation or gender identity. Counselors may not do so either. Parents can sue the school district if any school personnel does otherwise.If a counselor or teacher is approached by a student of that age group and talks about this subject on a personal level, then such an encounter must be reported to the parents.
However, such reporting is limited if there is a reason to believe that the child could be in danger. In concrete words: “Classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity may not occur in kindergarten through grade 3 or in a manner that is not age appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.»
Unfortunately, this means a culture of fear and censorship in schools, where faculty will move with fear when surrounding these topics.
Also when dealing with counseling, there will also be the fear of talking to a student if they bring up something as close to this subject. Most of the school will be focusing on quashing such topics from the student’s breath, which can lead to an isolation and also harm to the mental and even physical well-being of LGBTQ+ children who seek a space of safety and dialogue they cannot sometimes find at home.
There are two clear issues from the latter part of the bill. First, children at such an age are subject to bullying. Now if one has memory, at this age one of the main name callings is “you’re gay” or even worst terms on such manner.
In the case that a student is not actually gay it still is bothersome since for its peers it becomes an acceptable manner of ridicule while at the same time using false depictions of that person. However, it is much worse when the student is gay. Because if such a child does not have a welcoming environment in their own home, then they could turn to school officials as a means to vent and ask for advice.
Yet, with this bill becoming signed into law by the governor, such possibility is eliminated. Which in turn means the loss of trust and increase in the feeling of incomprehension from the student towards their surroundings.
Second, children can be exposed to grave danger from their own family that affects their development. If a homophobic or transphobic relative is made aware of their child’s “tendencies” then there will be repercussions.
Yes it is true that this bill has a clause where school officials may not disclose such information if they believe the child could be at risk. However this bill is contradictory in itself since it requires schools to be transparent with parents about the school curriculum and also their students whereabouts.
Also, this clause is up to the discretion of school officials and some of them may believe that it is not right for a child to be «having such thoughts» and may still report to the parents.
This is why it is important to meet people who are different from yourself. Children and young people have been exposed to horrendous experiences by their family members for coming out or being “discovered” as LGBTQ+.
Unfortunately this is an issue that affects all families regardless of race, ethnicity or class. For instance many parents expect their biological sons to act “masculine” or their biological children “femenine”. If that does not happen they are ridiculed, or even abused. I have met a few people and have very good friends who are afraid of sharing who they are to their families, others who have been “caught” and suffered consequences like perpetual beatings, ridicules and even conversion therapies.
To them it is not just a matter of gender norms, but also of good versus evil. It is evil to be LGBTQ+, in that sense that is the reason why the governor and his supporters are so adamant about this law. Yet, is it Christ-like submitting a very young person to conversion therapy?
There is bullying at school because of their sexuality, can’t ask for help at school and add to that their family turning abusive if found out. One needs to understand that a person is not “turned gay” or “becomes trans-like” by being exposed to such discussions.
People of the LGBTQ+ community know from a young age (some younger, others a bit older) that they have traits that are different from the societal norms.That is something one learns when you talk to them and get to know them. Sharing with one another is something we should do more, that is how we can learn and understand these divisions we have in society. In the end, how many of the proponents of this bill have actually known well an LGBTQ+ person without any preconceived filters?
Now it is true that one may see teaching about sexuality to young children as unnecessary or even abhorrent. However, that is exactly why sexuality and sex need to be brought out of the shadows from a very young age. It is from a young age where children live the events, develop many of the traits and the character that will then follow them for the rest of their lives as adults.
At a young age children are exposed to abuse that at times they can’t explain. So it is important to discuss this with them. When a child feels that they do not fall within the categories that society or their surroundings put them under, one should act with affirmation instead of vilification.In fact children need to feel supported, not banned. There needs to be an open dialogue about any of their concerns or inquiries about their sexuality and the world that surrounds them.
In a moment of sincerity the governor and the supporters of this bill need to recognize that behind this bill there is not as much the concern about keeping quiet with the taboos, or not talking about something “inappropriate” with children as to not “ruin their childhood lives”, but rather an ideological approach that is fueled by a political and even religious agenda to leave their stamp and mark their territory.
This isn’t about the well-being of children, this is about them winning a supposed “cultural war against the left”. Using legislation and children, mingling it with sexuality, gender identity and education is the perfect way to go on the offensive. However, it comes at a big cost since in between all this war, those who take the tolls are vulnerable beings.
Not just the children but also gender minorities who from a very young age and even as they grow into adulthood face the constant judgements, lack of opportunities and ridicules from their peers along with having to live with the frustration that their only “sin” is having the biological body that they have or the sexual attractions they carry. It is something horrible that society not just in the US but worldwide needs to understand. Worst of all, masking it with the pretext that it is for the well-being of children and their parents when in reality it is about spurious interests and a law of censored fear.
In conclusion this man could possibly be borderline anti: freedom of assembly, freedom of speech and minority human rights respectively. Lastly, the governor has beraded the youth for not submitting to his views on masking. Singleling children out in public and referring to them in a condescending manner in front of all the cameras.
If one was to make a poll open to public opinion around the world, how would those abroad see this? So much for a state that seeks to be exemplary in all manners. Not just on the efficiency and viability of its government and society, but also its decorum and presence. In the beginning of the school year he threatened repeatedly to defund public school employees if they were to abide by federal mask or vaccine mandates.
There were many cases where teachers sought to talk to the governor to discuss the health guidelines from the CDC and other health orgs to simply find no response. But that lack of response was then followed by continued public appearances and private messages to public school employees who were threatened to see the muscles of their schools and jobs cut if they so much acted against the governor’s wishes.
To these jewels, one should also not forget his open defiance of the federal government, as if he feels he is empowered like a tropical Hercules, blessed by the Republican gods, and anointed to take his post in 2024. In reality this is a comedic tragedy. The man whose campaign ad in 2018 involved his child reading The Art of the Deal, and with building blocks spelling out “build the wall” somehow managed to win.
A very questionable one, but a victory nonetheless. And all because the other candidate would «monkey things up» with socialism. Trump has his charisma, his charm but also severe incompetence. DeSantis on the other hand, poses a grave danger.
While he has managed relative popularity and political stability, we have yet to see him in a bigger stage with bigger multiple nemesis. Despite this, he does not lack the political competence since unlike Trump, the governor does have an education in political matters and has public office experience. This is why in a moment where we are allegedly fighting alleged tyranny around the globe, how about we focus at home.