Civil rights organizations and LGBTQ advocacy groups have accused Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis of antagonistic efforts to obliterate Black history and curb diversity and fairness within communities.

“Under the leadership of Governor DeSantis, the state of Florida has become hostile to Black Americans and in direct conflict with the democratic ideals that our union was founded upon,” NAACP President & CEO Derrick Johnson said.

“He should know that democracy will prevail because its defenders are prepared to stand up and fight. We’re not backing down, and we encourage our allies to join us in the battle for the soul of our nation,” Johnson added.

Caution for LGBTQ

In January, the introduction of an Advanced Placement course centred on African American studies for high school students was prevented allegedly by the DeSantis administration.

The NAACP travel notice asserts that Florida displays clear animosity towards African Americans, people of color, and LGBTQ individuals.

It likewise advises individuals that prior to considering travel to the state, they need to be aware that Florida underestimates and downgrades the contributions made by African Americans and other communities of color.

In short, it is not a favorable state to visit and spend one’s hard-earned dollars on.

Hostility towards visitors

According to Visit Florida, a tourism agency, Florida experienced a significant influx of visitors in 2022, with approximately 137.6 million people traveling to the state. This boosted the state’s economy by contributing $101.9 billion and supporting over 1.7 million jobs in 2021.

Among the state’s popular tourist attractions, Disney holds a prominent position. However, a prolonged dispute has unfolded between Disney and Governor DeSantis.

Recently, Disney decided to cancel a planned $1 billion campus in Florida, which added fuel to the feud. The conflict originated when Disney voiced criticism against Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law.

In response to Governor DeSantis signing the “Don’t Say Gay” bill into law, Equality Florida issued an advisory. The organization expressed concerns that this law, along with other proposed measures, has transformed classrooms into political battlegrounds, sending a message of unwelcome to LGBTQ families and students in Florida.

The League of United Latin American Citizens also released an advisory highlighting Florida’s stringent immigration law. Domingo Garcia, the president of the organization, denounced the new immigration laws as “hostile and dangerous,” asserting that they posed a clear and immediate threat to Latinos. Garcia described Florida as a perilous and inhospitable environment for both law-abiding Americans and immigrants.

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