Florida Governor Ron DeSantis recently dodged a question about his stance on “more mainstream human rights, like gay marriage and sexual orientation of adults,” instead defending the state’s statute that prevents LGBTQ+ issues from being taught in kindergarten through 12th grade.
The governor has been known for his anti-LGBTQ+ measures under the guise of “protecting children,” but this non-answer reveals his hesitance to defend the rights of LGBTQ+ adults. Despite the reporter’s clarification that the question was regarding adults and not minors, DeSantis dismissed the correction and sought a different journalist.
DeSantis has been a frequent target of criticism from the LGBTQ+ community due to his merciless campaign against LGBTQ+ youngsters. More than half of LGBTQ+ parents in Florida are considering leaving the state, according to a study conducted by the Williams Institute. The study indicates that LGBTQ+ families feel less protected due to the Don’t Say Gay law’s passing and DeSantis’ frequent attacks. Twenty-five percent of respondents reported being less likely to go out in their neighborhood due to fears of harassment from neighbors.
DeSantis has built his political career on the backs of marginalized communities, particularly people of color and the LGBTQ+ community. He has launched a series of sneak attacks on “woke indoctrination” in schools, appointed his own administrators, and used the bully pulpit to seize control of the state’s educational system. His team has also used social media to spread hate speech and sexual assault allegations against members of the LGBTQ+ community and their allies.
The governor’s preoccupation with punishing Disney for coming out against his Don’t Say Gay Law has earned him widespread criticism. Disney is suing him, and DeSantis’s funders and supporters have been fleeing as he portrays himself as more concerned with partisan politics and his own ego than with doing what’s best for Floridians.
In conclusion, Governor DeSantis’s refusal to directly answer a question about LGBTQ+ rights and his history of anti-LGBTQ+ measures have led to widespread criticism and concern. The LGBTQ+ community in Florida feels less protected, and more than half of LGBTQ+ parents are considering leaving the state. DeSantis’s preoccupation with partisan politics and punishing his opponents has also caused his support to wane. It remains to be seen if he will address these concerns and work to protect the rights of all Floridians, including those in the LGBTQ+ community.