It has been a long and unfortunate road for many of us that have been involved with the system of representing law enforcement officers in this state. Historically, the only party that ever paid attention to the needs of its public employees suddenly, and without much warning, turned on those that make this state function. We can argue the core tenants of Florida’s Constitution or even the basic principles of our Founding Fathers with regard to public safety, and public education. Truly, a group so manically mesmerized by a fringe radical group like the Tea Party (or any other radical group for that matter) that goes on the attack and vilifies the very group of people that have previously been at the foundation of their support base and used by those elected officials to garner votes, leaves one only to question their veracity and intentions as publicly elected officials.
To offer more types of educational possibilities while continuing to reduce the fiscal responsibility to our students is nothing more than an attack on education. To then blame our teachers for the ills of the budget when they are some of the lowest paid in the nation is seemingly delusional. Who could, with a straight face, hear this argument and not choke on the hypocrisy? Likewise, when dealing with public safety personnel. We lose more than our share of officers in this state each year. Our Governor even feigns a tear at the funerals and afterward, kicks cops square in the ribs with his shiny Jack Boots while raising his hand in allegiance to a group of radicals in the Tea Party. Without hesitation, he “taxed” each of us and every other public employee for the right to work?
And in case any citizen of Florida felt left out of the “love fest” Rick Scott and his ilk are so happy to deliver, we will all be honored to pay yearly increases to our homeowner’s insurance and phone bills. And, regardless of how you feel on the issue, the targeted violation of employee rights with regard to drug testing even though the Supreme Court has ruled on these issues multiple times. Katy bar the Door, why let something like a Supreme Court ruling stand in your way.
It goes without saying that our Governor and leadership within the Republican Party have been drinking the cool aide as quickly as the Tea Party faithful can deliver it up. But stop and think about just what this will probably mean for Florida in the not so distant future. A correctional system in chaos, expenditures in private prisons diminishing any standard of care for inmates and further burdening the tax payers while making those corporations fatter, continued lowering of expectations in education to accommodate private schools profit margins, the teaching profession paying probably not much more than a full time job at McDonalds, a generation of un-educated, un-motivated youngsters whose sole opportunity is to jump into a waiting part time service industry job. History has already shown us what is waiting at the other end of that tunnel. Lord knows that any state funding for Bright Futures Scholarships will probably be unavailable to them and college tuition (something else that went up) will be so far out of reach that our state’s jobless rate will probably never be much better than it is today.
But the greatest sign that the Republican/Tea Party agenda is mostly a lie is that simple fact that hardly any corporation will move to this state given a poor educational picture and a diminishing public safety presence. Last month, when Boeing Aerospace announced that it chose N.C. as the right-to-work state to build its new assembly plant, the CEO stated that his number one reason was that it had the best education system to support not just his employees, but the future prospective employees for his company’s future.
Now let’s get back to our Founding Fathers. America’s future as a representative democracy depends on our ability to educate the populous. Whether you read Thomas Jefferson or John Adams or even Thomas Paine, you find a constant mandate. Education is key. Key to a civil society. That means that an intact and well funded education system that truly is available to every member of our state is an absolute cornerstone issue in our society. It is also a law enforcement issue. It doesn’t take much convincing of your average cop, let alone parent, that if a child is dropping out of school, he/she will be dropping into the street. Then we all get to pay more.
But our new found Tea Party Republicans have seemingly lost sight of the basics. Or is it that they have just run full speed into the next special interest that pays better for THEIR futures: Corporate Florida?
As a public employee of 25 years, a father, a homeowner and someone who can no longer afford to retire, I have been attacked on all fronts by my government and my Governor. All Republicans/Tea Party Faithful. And, if I read the overwhelming public opinion on the matter, I am clearly not alone. Their answers to the hard questions are simply repetitions of the same responses. The questions are truly never answered. As if their true agenda is too heinous to admit to. They just keep saying the same thing as if we will just believe it one day. And they continue to goose step forward with their new found mantra, “Let’s get to work.” Once upon a time, someone else used a similar slogan to cloak the masses. It went something like this, “Arbiet macht frei”. Work will set you free.
VOTE DEMOCRAT AND END THIS REIGN OF TERROR.
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