In Florida, cruelty will be on the ballot in November

“The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.


Election day in Florida falls on Tuesday, Nov. 8. Cruelty will be on the ballot. It is up to the people in Florida to decide whether they remain silent on the issue, or go out en masse to rid themselves of wanna-be Trumps who treat certain people they deem less-than as chattel — pieces on a chess board that can be moved at will for political benefit.

Why focus on cruelty and its employment by politicians for their political gain?

Let’s play a game of comparison. We can use Hurricane Fiona and its devastating strike on Puerto Rico. An alone-in-the-world single mother with two children has lost her house and all their belongings to the storm. She sits with her the two kids, ages seven and 10, in tow and wondering: What now? Along comes a woman who claims to be a government official. The mom is not necessarily sure what department she works for, but at this time of desperation, who cares… 

“Don’t worry, I’m here to help,” she tells her. “For now and until things are resolved, we will send you to a place where you will find sanctuary and your two kids will be housed. They will be able to go to school. And you will be provided with a job. All will be OK,” she assures her with a smile and a gift card for MacDonald’s.

Faced with this quandary, the woman reluctantly accepts this supposed act of charity. It’s that, she realizes, or they will be living on the streets of San Juan for the foreseeable future. That night they are housed in a large gym-like structure where they are fed, allowed to shower, and cots are provided for them to sleep. The next morning they board an airplane that flies them to an unknown location — a place up north called Martha’s Vineyard. She is handed a map fit for a third-grader with a big star where Martha’s Vineyard is located. As they disembark the plane they find themselves in a beautiful location with people staring at them as if they had just landed from Mars. 

The woman who assured her that all would be fine is nowhere to be found. Another person, this time a young man, approaches her. He asks if she has all her belongings, and before turning to leave, says: “Good luck.” And disappears.

Something even worse occurred just recently to a group of 48 immigrants who crossed the Texas border in search of a better life here in the United States.

As a result, Governor Ron DeSantis spent more than $600,000, taxes paid by Floridians, to finance this cruel and hateful deception on mostly fleeing Venezuelans who on foot crossed the roadless Darién Gap between Colombia and Panama and made their way north through Central America and Mexico. DeSantis sees the stunt as a joke on Democrats and President Joe Biden, and decided to send them to Martha’s Vineyard, where Vice President Kamala Harris and former president Barak Obama have homes. 

I see the move as the work of a cynical and sadistic mind. Not to mention the fact that the governor of Florida just spent our money to fly 48 immigrants who found themselves in Texas to a state he considers a sanctuary for “illegal” immigrants. Also, 600,000 Florida dollars spent in Texas to fly 48 human beings… that’s $12,500 per each undocumented person. Somebody, and I’m not accusing DeSantis of anything but being one cruel and sadistic bastard, is making good money on these poor souls. Oh! And there’s more where that came from. The Florida Legislature, dominated by Republicans, set aside $12 million for the transportation program now being used by DeSantis to carry out the devil’s work. Again, aside from the fact that it’s inhumane, someone should investigate where all the money will be spent. Because $12,500 per person to fly them from Texas to Massachusetts seems a little too rich — especially when you consider that Gov. DeSantis sees these folks as less than human and as “illegal,” in other words, worthy of discarding.

Significantly, there are a host of Cuban and Cuban American politicians from the Miami area, most every one a Republican including our three members of Congress and the one U.S. senator, who have not raised their voices to complain of DeSantis’ unholy act of cruelty. Not one! Which brings me to one of two conclusions: We are living in a country where fear is becoming a driving force in politics. Or else, you would think that Cubans and Cuban Americans, who complain of injustices wrought on the Cuban people, would be the first to scream holy hell because of what DeSantis has done… 

But I repeat, not a word from these community ‘leaders.’ They are either fearful of the governor, or else agree that this new group of people are worthy of the trash heap. Or maybe… they’re in on the $12 million heist.

Secondly, the only immediate solution I see is that in just weeks we can vote DeSantis out of office. You don’t have to vote for Charlie Crist for governor, but you sure as hell can vote against DeSantis by voting for Crist. 

It’s what I plan to do. The ultimate tragedy, as Dr. King states in the opening quote, would be that Floridians care so little about human life that they reelect a monster like DeSantis. 

One last thought: Not participating is as bad as voting for the SOB.