DeSantis Strikes Back  - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
DeSantis Strikes Back 

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is a quick and effective political counter-puncher. He demonstrated this Thursday when he called out Disney Chairman Bob Chapek for his virtue-signaling objection to Florida’s recently passed Parental Rights in Education bill. DeSantis promises to sign the bill into law, though the woke heavens (or secular equivalent thereof) fall.

Teachers, principals, and other organs of the hydra-headed monsters government schools have become may be obsessed with sex and the various combinations and permutations of it, some of these only recently discovered. And they may be keen on flogging their favorite theories. (More interested in these exotica than in teaching young people to read and write, it would appear.) But this is no reason why kindergarteners should be bedeviled with an emotional and tendentious subject they are nowhere near ready to handle, and which they care not a whit about. Thus the new and sensible Florida law, which bans the teaching of sexual orientation and gender identity in kindergarten through third grade. That’s ages five through eight if you’re keeping score.

A woke White House and social justice warriors in corporate board rooms across the land are very cross about this inconvenience to the revolution they’re supporting (unaware, apparently, that it will eventually eat them). In this space last Wednesday we learned that President Clouseau’s verbally dexterous but truth-averse chief flak, Jen Psaki, called the legislators who passed this bill and the governor who promises to sign it into law anti-gay bigots. And the aforementioned Chapek demanded a meeting with DeSantis to instruct him on how the new law could be “unfairly used to target gay, lesbian, non-binary, and transgender kids and families.” Of course he didn’t explain how not talking about sexuality among very small people targets anyone.

Chapek crooned that the people at Disney, and by implication all right-thinking and decent people, “share the same goal of a more tolerant, respectful world.” Tolerance and respect that Chapek, Psaki, and card-carrying progressives everywhere are not prepared to extend to those who consider that early grade school children are too young to attempt to sort the physical and emotional minefields of human sexuality. A subject better left to later, and with the guidance of parents, not that of Comrade Teacher.

“When you have companies that have made a fortune off being family friendly and catering to families and your kids, they should understand that parents of young kids do not want this injected into their kid’s kindergarten classroom,” DeSantis said the day after Chapek’s public remarks. “You have companies, like at Disney, that are going to say and criticize parents’ rights. They’re going to criticize the fact that we don’t want transgenderism in kindergarten and first grade classrooms. If that’s the hill they want to die on, then how do they possibly explain lining their pockets with their relationship with the Communist Party of China? … They don’t say a word about the really brutal practices that you see over there at the hands of the CCP.”

DeSantis finished his deconstruction of Chapek, head of a devolved and now distinctly less than magical kingdom, by saying that Florida policies will be “based on the best interests of Florida citizens, not on the musing of woke corporations.” And I’m sure a large majority of Floridians are glad of it.

The wailing and gnashing of teeth on the part of leftists about this new law, as well about any common-sense laws conservative legislators pass and conservative governors sign into law, is pure codswallop. The Parental Rights in Education bill was not promoted by bigotry but by common sense. There’s nothing anti-gay, or anti-anybody-else about it. Just as there’s no voter suppression in the vote security laws several states have recently passed. If there’s any bigotry involved in the current matter, as in so many other cultural conflicts, it’s the bigotry of the political and cultural left that will tolerate no other approach to public policy and etiquette but their own.

There will be more cultural clashes. An aggressive left has many more hills on which it’s eager to fight. But on this present matter, the public score of the match is advantage Florida governor and legislature.

Larry Thornberry
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Larry Thornberry is a writer in Tampa.
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