Florida Attempts to Whitewash History in Order to Advance Ron DeSantis's Political Ambitions
Days after passing the already infamous "Don't Say Gay" law, the Florida legislature has now approved a bill that would limit how workplaces and schools teach about race and identity.
Washington Post: “The measure prohibits trainings that cause someone to feel guilty or ashamed about the past collective actions of their race or sex, and its passage clears the way for Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) to sign one of his top legislative priorities into law.”
The bill opens the door to lawsuits under Florida’s civil rights laws by white male employees or students who feel uncomfortable because they discover in a lecture or training that white men owned slaves, passed segregation laws, or discriminated against women in the workplace.
Until interpreted by Florida's courts it's unclear how broadly the law will be applied, but it's difficult to see how any teacher, instructor, or college professor can teach the history of slavery, the treatment of native Americans, the internment of Japanese-Americans, Jim Crow, more modern police abuses, or white privilege without making white kids squirm a bit. So, it appears pretty clear that Republicans intend to cow instructors into revising history so white folks [some might say snowflakes] don't experience guilt.
Washington Post: "Florida Democrats, racial justice advocates and some corporate leaders say the bill is another attempt by the Florida GOP to whitewash history including the legacy of slavery here and across the country."
All of this is a really bad idea, undermines real historical scholarship, and will lead to a lot of frivolous lawsuits by folks who want to believe the civil war was really about states' rights rather than slavery. And, like the "Don't Say Gay" legislation, it's really all about Ron DeSantis's political aspirations; his desire to out-Trump the former President, and become every white Christian nationalist's favorite culture warrior.
By: Don Lam & Curated Content