Several Black Republicans and conservatives are speaking out against Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis after his state released revised African American history school standards suggesting slavery benefitted Black people.
“It raises eyebrows,” Diante Johnson, president of the Black Conservative Federation that’s back Donald Trump‘s reelection, told POLITICO. “Ron DeSantis is not the candidate for Black conservatives and that’s what [he] constantly, constantly exhibits to us.”
The revised guidelines, which were signed into law last year, require middle school educators to teach students that “slaves developed skills which, in some instances, could be applied for their personal benefit.”
Rep. Byron Donalds, who’s supported DeSantis prior and is backing Trump, has been locked in a public spat with the Florida governor over the new rules. While he’s largely agreed with the overall changes, he claims the “personal benefit” part is “wrong and needs to be adjusted.”
“It’s just not a good position for the DeSantis campaign to take. And they’re doubling down and that’s what’s even more disgusting,” Johnson remarked.
It’s not just Donalds who take issue with DeSantis and the new Florida education rules. Many Black conservative Congressmen, including Rep. Tim Scott (R-S.C.), Rep. John James (R-Mich.), and Wesley Hunt (R-Texas) have publicly criticized the guidelines, as well.
“As the direct descendent of a slave, I have a hard time understanding Governor DeSantis’ position that transferrable skills learned in bondage are somehow a net benefit,” Rep. Hunt said, per POLITICO. “If Ron DeSantis spent more time doing the job the people of Florida elected him to do and less time on his failing Presidential campaign, perhaps Florida’s curriculum on slavery would more accurately reflect the pain and heartbreak experienced by millions who suffered through the original sin.”
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