TALLAHASSEE, Florida (TodayNews) — The list of those disappointed with Florida’s new standards for teaching black history continues to grow, as does the criticism.
Democrats, civil rights leaders and Vice President Kamala Harris are among the many who disagree with the state’s new guidelines.
However, the governor and his department of education are not going to change course.
“These are the most stringent standards in the history of African Americans – perhaps in the country,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said over the weekend.
“Replacing History with Lies”: Vice President Harris denounces Florida’s new standards for teaching black history
A major disagreement with the new standards is that the instruction will include that enslaved people have developed skills that can be “applied to their own personal gain,” a concept that DeSantis appeared to endorse when answering questions during the 2024 campaign.
“I think they’re probably going to show some people who ended up, you know, became farriers to do things later in life,” DeSantis said.
The comments added fuel to already outraged critics, including famed civil rights lawyer Ben Crump, who called it offensive on Monday.
“This irresponsible and shameful so-called black history curriculum is an insult to our ancestors,” Crump said.
House Democratic leader Fentris Driskell is among lawmakers who have criticized the new curriculum.
“These new standards just don’t hold up,” Rep. Driskell said.
The man jumped off a Carnival Cruise ship bound for Florida, authorities said.
Last Saturday, Driskell posted letter denouncing the standards and calling for Florida Commissioner of Education Manny Diaz to resign.
“In my call for the resignation of Manny Diaz, you really see a call for some sort of accountability,” Driskell said.
The governor’s 2024 rivals, including former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, also picked up criticism over the weekend.
“Gov. DeSantis started this fire because of a bill he signed into law, and now he doesn’t want to take responsibility for what he did after that,” Christie. said.
A change in standards is as unlikely as resignation, but could the political consequences be fatal to the governor’s presidential campaign? Political scientists think so.
“Such a policy or its comments cannot be retracted, and no reasonable person would consider it anything other than racism. This could be the nail in the coffin, as it not only creates a culture of racism, but also weakens our educational standards with the very indoctrination that DeSantis scolded,” said political science professor Tara Newsom.