Examining Governor DeSantis’ Recent Proposals in Florida

The history of African Americans is a complex and multifaceted one, spanning centuries of struggle, oppression, and triumph. From the political conflicts that led to the development of slavery to the ongoing contributions of Americans of the African diaspora to society, the narrative of African American history is one of immense importance.

Recently, the discussion on the history of African Americans has intensified again as Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida announced his plan to ban diversity, equity and inclusion programs, including critical race theory, at Florida colleges. This has sparked debate on the importance of teaching the history of slavery and its aftermath to Florida schoolchildren.

At the same time, the discourse around gas stoves has reached a fever pitch. The Consumer Product Safety Commission announced it would consider regulations on indoor air pollution from gas stoves, and a study revealed that gas-burning stoves are responsible for roughly 12.7 percent of childhood asthma cases nationwide.[0] Subsequently, the appliance has acquired a crowd of newly passionate defenders.[0]

In addition, Governor DeSantis released the proposed Fiscal 2023-2024 Framework for Freedom Budget, solidifying his commitment to support the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s (FWC) mission to protect Florida’s natural resources.[1] Included in the budget are high-priority conservation items, statewide seagrass restoration support, and support for law enforcement.[1]

The budget also proposes cutting taxes by $2 billion to provide relief to Florida families.[2] While the Governor makes budget recommendations to the Legislature, it is the Legislature that ultimately determines the state budget.[2] Legislature is obligated to pass the budget bill, which must be balanced, on an annual basis due to the constitutional requirement.[2]

Finally, Governor DeSantis has also come under fire for questioning the jury process on the death penalty, suggesting the law should be changed so only “maybe 8 out of 12” jurors have to agree, instead of requiring a unanimous decision.[3]

It is clear that Governor DeSantis’ proposals are eliciting a strong reaction from the public, including those who are concerned about the importance of teaching about African American history, the effects of gas stoves, and the consequences of the proposed budget and death penalty changes. The ongoing debate around the Governor’s proposals is likely to continue in the coming weeks, as the Florida House and Senate consider the budget recommendations.

0. “The Fiery Gas Stove Wars | The New Republic” newrepublic.com, 23 Feb. 2023, https://newrepublic.com/article/170246/fiery-gas-stove-wars

1. “FWC: Governor Ron DeSantis’ Framework for Freedom Budget …” www.midfloridanewspapers.com, 23 Feb. 2023, https://www.midfloridanewspapers.com/polk_news_sun/fwc-governor-ron-desantis-framework-for-freedom-budget-promotes-natural-resource-restoration-initiatives-and-supports/article_9a37a7f8-aed1-11ed-87eb-abdaed5e19d2.html

2. “”The Framework for Freedom,” Governor Ron DeSantis’ State …” gunster.com, 23 Feb. 2023, https://gunster.com/alerts/the-framework-for-freedom-governor-ron-desantis-state-budget-recommendation-for-the-2023-2024-fiscal-year/

3. “Ron DeSantis wants to end unanimous jury for death penalty, thus …” boingboing.net, 23 Feb. 2023, https://boingboing.net/2023/01/24/ron-desantis-wants-to-end-unanimous-jury-for-death-penalty-thus-more-executions-video.html

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