HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. – On Monday, the NAACP Board of Directors issued a formal travel advisory for Florida, claiming Governor DeSantis is attempting to erase Black history in the state.
“The travel advisory comes in direct response to Governor Ron DeSantis’ aggressive attempts to erase Black history and to restrict diversity, equity, and inclusion programs in Florida schools,” said a statement released by the NAACP.
The formal travel notice states, “Florida is openly hostile toward African Americans, people of color and LGBTQ+ individuals. Before traveling to Florida, please understand that the state of Florida devalues and marginalizes the contributions of and the challenges faced by African Americans and other communities of color.”
“Let me be clear – failing to teach an accurate representation of the horrors and inequalities that Black Americans have faced and continue to face is a disservice to students and a dereliction of duty to all,” said NAACP President & CEO Derrick Johnson.
Following the release of the NAACP travel advisory, Dana Galen, Chair of the Hillsborough County Republican Party, pushed back.
“As the first black female Chair of the Hillsborough County Republican Party, I find it rich that the NAACP in Hillsborough County is putting out “travel advisories,” telling people not to come to Florida when the NAACP has done absolutely nothing for the black community here in Florida,” said Galen.
“They would curry more favor if they would support the black community by helping them get employment, education, and betterment instead of attacking some unseen enemy and, once again, causing separation and division,” said Galen. “What notable act has the NAACP done for Tampa and Hillsborough County? If someone can show us the results and achievements in Tampa and all of Hillsborough County, I want to see them.”
On May 15th, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a measure aimed at prohibiting colleges and universities from spending money on “DEI” programs.
“In reality, what this concept of DEI has been is an attempt to impose orthodoxy on the university. And not even necessarily in the classroom, but through the administrative apparatus of the university itself,” DeSantis said at the bill signing last week.
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University system Chancellor Ray Rodrigues, a former Republican state senator, touted the bill as providing for the “dismantling of the DEI bureaucracy that has grown up on our campuses.”
The travel advisory was initially proposed to the Board of Directors by NAACP’s Florida State Conference.
Fox News host Geraldo Rivera ripped the NAACP over the Florida travel advisory Monday, calling it “a fear-mongering publicity stunt.”
“I think the NAACP is one of the most venerated and respected civil organizations that have been around in my long lifetime. They fought the good fight for civil rights, but this is not about that,” Rivera told Fox News host Martha MacCallum. “This is a travel advisory. This is a warning to tourists to stay out of Florida and I think in that regard, it really is a fear-mongering publicity stunt and I find it very much to be in bad taste.”
“This is not about instilling fear in the hearts of black tourists who come to Florida by the millions, who represent a substantial portion, 16% of Florida’s population,” Rivera said. “Many, many million there, black people and middle-class black people and people of perfectly satisfied to live in the state and now here comes a tourist advisory, a travel advisory, stay out of Florida? It is ridiculous.”
“Compare a real travel advisory: LULAC, The Latin American – the League of United Latin American Citizens issued a travel advisory recently because Florida said it was not going to recognize the 19 states that give migrants licenses even if they’re undocumented, even if they’re illegal,” Rivera said. “So if you tell people without licenses they’re going to get busted by cops, that’s one thing.”
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