(As originally published with additional photos, Mon, November 27th 2023, 8:50 PM EST)
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (TND) — A lawmaker in Florida wants to make sure no government money goes to pay reparations to the descendants of slaves.
On Monday, Sen. Blaise Ingoglia, R-Spring Hill, filed a proposed constitutional amendment to avoid the possibility.
It’s called “A joint resolution to prohibit the state, a county, a municipality, or any other political subdivision from paying reparations to certain individuals.”
Then, it specifies no government would be allowed to “pay compensation in the form of reparations to an individual who is a descendant of an enslaved individual who lived in the United States before December 6, 1865.”
That’s the date of the ratification of the 13th Amendment, which formally ended slavery in America.
Florida is a former Confederate state and it allowed slavery before the Civil War.
The proposal will be considered during the 2024 legislative session, which will start in January, and it’ll need to be approved by 60% of each house before going to voters.
The plan is to put it on the November 2024 ballot, which is also the presidential election.
Florida lawmakers will also be considering a bill called the “Historical Monuments and Memorials Protection Act,” which would require “public display of a specified statue,” including those honoring Confederates and specifying one Confederate general who escaped to Mexico and Cuba to avoid arrest for treason.
Sen. Ingoglia is a former chairman of the Florida Republican Party.
Last year, he tried to legally kill the state Democratic Party with “The Ultimate Cancel Act” by “requiring the Division of Elections to immediately cancel the filings of a political party if certain conditions exist.”
Among those conditions: “If the party’s platform has previously advocated for, or been in support of, slavery or involuntary servitude.”
Southern Democrats at the time wanted to continue slavery.
Ingoglia, who wrote about “standing up to the Woke Mob” on his campaign website, explained himself this way:
“For years now, leftist activists have been trying to ‘cancel’ people and companies for things they have said or done in the past. This includes the removal of statues and memorials and the renaming of buildings. Using this standard, it would be hypocritical not to cancel the Democrat Party itself for the same reason.”
In 2021, as a state representative, Ingoglia co-sponsored a bill to keep technology platforms from banning political candidates and subject them to lawsuits from users for removing content.
“Day in and day out, our freedom of speech as conservatives is under attack by the ‘big tech’ oligarchs in Silicon Valley. But in Florida, we said this egregious example of biased silencing will not be tolerated,” he explained.
The possibility of reparations to descendants of slaves has been under consideration in some parts of the country, such as California, but not in Florida.
Meanwhile, the NAACP issued a travel advisory for the Sunshine State last year.
“Florida is openly hostile toward African Americans, people of color and LGBTQ+ individuals,” it said.
Among its issues with Florida:
- the state Education Department preventing the College Board’s “African American Studies” AP course from being offered in public schools,
- a law banning public colleges from using federal or state money for diversity, equity and inclusion programs (Sen. Ingoglia voted for it), and
- state education standards for teaching Black history that include how various trades performed by slaves, “in some instances, could be applied for their personal benefit.”