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Tipsheet

'Hostile to Black Americans': NAACP Issues Travel Warning for This State

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People on Saturday issued a formal travel advisory for the state of Florida for what the group claims is Gov. Ron DeSantis’s “aggressive attempts to erase Black history” and rein in DEI programs in state schools. 

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"Florida is openly hostile toward African Americans, people of color and LGBTQ+ individuals,” the advisory states. “Before traveling to Florida, please understand that the state of Florida devalues and marginalizes the contributions of, and the challenges faced by African Americans and other communities of color.”

NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson said failing to teach all aspects of black history is a "disservice to students" and "a dereliction of duty to all."

"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," Johnson added. "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."

DeSantis has pushed back on claims he’s whitewashing history, however, and last week, the Republican governor even signed an African American studies bill into law, a measure that had unanimous support in the House and Senate.  

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“It was important to me and my constituents that this legislation was clear on the real fact that ALL of our history, the good the bad and the ugly would be taught to our children,” Democrat State Rep. Christopher Benjamin said in a statement about HB 551. “Especially, the parts of our history that reflect the plight and the victories of the African Americans that helped build this great country. Ensuring that we provide guidance to our educators that we want them to continue to enrich our children’s learning experience with good, honest and objective view points on our history, because this is how we learn, how we grow and most importantly how we continue to move forward as a people, a community and as the Great State of Florida.” 

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