While Florida Stands Against Hate, Nikki Fried Plays Politics
Self-proclaimed Neo-Nazis appear to be testing Florida’s new hate crime law to see what will happen, which didn’t turn out too well for them. WFLA reported that The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) announced the arrest of a neo-Nazi demonstrator accused of hanging swastikas and other antisemitic banners over I-4 in Orlando, but that’s not good enough for failed gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried. Fried hates Governor DeSantis and Republicans so much that even when they win important battles against hate, Fried has nothing but bile to spew by saying the people responsible for the antisemitic crimes are DeSantis supporters.
Authorities said on June 10th, Cape Canaveral resident Jason Brown and others hung their antisemitic banners over I-4 in Orlando without written permission, which is against state law. FDLE agents said Brown claims to be a member of “Order of the Black Sun,” an antisemitic, extremist group. As a result of his alleged demonstrations, Brown was charged with criminal mischief.
The 2023 Florida legislative session has proven historic with the passing of HB 269, a hate crime bill that achieved unanimous bipartisan support from all Florida House and Senate members. The new law raises what was once a misdemeanor to a third-degree felony to prevent specific acts of religious and ethnic hatred, including provisions prohibiting individuals from displaying or projecting images onto a building, structure, or property without the property owner’s permission.
State Representative Mike Caruso (R-West Palm Beach), who sponsored HB 269, had this to say during a press conference on Wednesday;
This bill has been signed into law by our governor, and now some are testing the law and our law enforcement’s resolve to catch and prosecute those who commit these crimes. Rest assured that upon speaking to Police Chief Nichole Addazio and State Prosecutor Dave Aronberg, they are more than ever determined to bring these individuals to justice and those who conspire, train, finance, and organize with these criminals. These hateful acts will stop. Nobody should feel threatened and harassed because of their skin color or religious beliefs. ~State Representative Mike Caruso
State Senator Alexis Calatayud (R-Miami) was the bill sponsor on the Senate side. She had this to say about the arrest;
This is a big day. They are testing the law and law enforcement’s resolve to arrest and convict them. I’m ecstatic that our policy laid the heaviest hand of the law. -State Senator Alexis Calatayud
Florida Politics came out with an article quoting failed Gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried who managed to twist a positive outcome for this story into the fault of her party’s adversary, Governor Ron DeSantis, by stating;
I’d like to thank the FDLE for arresting one of the neo-Nazis involved in Florida’s recent string of vile anti-semitic demonstrations. However, one arrest on a glorified vandalism charge doesn’t solve the core problem. Ron’s refusal to loudly and forcefully denounce the neo-Nazis that support him has created an environment where antisemitism can flourish.
Ron can point to this arrest as proof of action — and I’m sure he will — but we all know it’s not enough. For what seems like the thousandth time, we call on Ron to do the bare minimum: vocally condemn neo-Nazism and all forms of hate speech. ~Nikki Fried
By Fried’s twisted logic, DeSantis supporters are Nazis, he is supposed to rid the state of antisemitism and racism, and he is supposed to denounce the criminals in this instance because Fried demands it. Meanwhile, DeSantis clearly stated that hate wouldn’t be tolerated in Florida and proved he opposed hatred against any religious or ethnic group when he signed HB 269 into law.
Republicans should demand an apology from Nikki Fried for making such an outlandish, insulting, and untrue statement.
Florida has again proven it is a great state to live in.
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