Florida

House Democrat compares Tea Party to the KKK

Alan Grayson

Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL) is as classless as ever.

The controversial Florida Democrat sent out an email on Monday features an image of a burning cross — using it to spell “Tea Party” — and the body of the email features comments he made during a recent interview with Al Sharpton on MSNBC.

Alan Grayson fundraising email

“I think that ordinary Americans are with the President. They’re appalled by the Tea Party’s tactics,” Grayson told Sharpton. “At this point, the Tea Party is no more popular than the Klan.”

“They simply want to bring about the End of Days, as quickly as possible,” said Grayson of the Tea Party. “That’s the ultimate Tea Party Republican desire, to bring about the End of Days. The Republican Party has become the largest suicide pact in history. And I hope they don’t take us with them.”

Grayson, who is unapologetic about the email, isn’t new to controversy, though this may be his most distasteful example to date. In 2009, he threatened to imprison an activist who created a website that was critical of him. He also accused Republicans who opposed ObamaCare of wanting the sick to “die quickly.”

Zero tolerance? School suspends child for being a child

Guys, remember being a kid and playing “Cops and Robbers”?  Maybe your game was more “Cowboys and Indians.”  Whatever.  If you’re a male, you probably played a game like this at least once in your childhood.  It was almost a rite of passage.  Well, a school in Osceola County, Florida has apparently outlawed these timeless games in the name of “zero tolerance”:

An mother is outraged after she said her 8-year-old son was kicked out of class for playing cops with his friends at Harmony Community School and using his finger to simulate a handgun.

Jordan Bennett was suspended from school for the day, but his mother, Bonnie, said she’s now worried her son be labeled as violent with a suspension on his record.

“He had nothing in his hand. It was a finger gun, a pretend gun,” Bennett said.

But as it turns out, the school considered the gesture to be an act of violence.

Ah, for the good old days when an act of violence required…oh, I don’t know…actual violence to take place? The boys were playing cops.  No robbers, apparently, but cops.  You know, the supposed good guys?

Of course, Bennett isn’t some mother who thinks her child can do no wrong.  From the same report:

“A written apology,” she said. “If he would have written an essay about why it was inappropriate, what he did, that would have made more of an impact.”

Frankly, I don’t see what her son did as inappropriate.  It’s a game.  No human being has ever been killed by a bullet fired from a finger.  Ever.  In the whole of human history, it has never happened once.

George Zimmerman rescues trapped driver

George Zimmerman

A little more than a week after being aquitted in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman is back in the news because of his efforts to help rescue someone from an overturned truck last week in Florida:

George Zimmerman, who has been in hiding since he was acquitted of murder in the death of Trayvon Martin, emerged to help rescue someone who was trapped in an overturned truck, police said today.

Sanford Police Department Capt. Jim McAuliffe told ABC News that Zimmerman “pulled an individual from a truck that had rolled over” at the intersection of a Florida highway last week. Florida Highway Patrol is now handling the case, McAuliffe said.

The crash occurred at the intersection of I-4 and route 417, police said. The crash site is less than a mile from where he shot Martin.

This comes just days after President Barack Obama weighed in on the shooting and trial, which further fanned the flames of racial divide in its aftermath, and protests throughout the country against the verdict. Despite being found vindicated in the eyes of the judicial system, Zimmerman continues to receive death threats, according to ABC News, and has to wear a bulletproof vest in public.

Holder Calls for Repeal of ‘Stand Your Ground’ Laws

One of many issues that has come under fire since the start of the whole George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin drama has been “Stand Your Ground” laws.  To many, they were the root of Martin’s death.

Zimmerman’s acquittal has clearly done nothing to change this.

Yesterday, Attorney General Eric Holder threw his own opinions into the ring.

“Separate and apart from the case that has drawn the nation’s attention,” Holder said of the Zimmerman case, “it’s time to question laws that senselessly expand the concept of self-defense and sow dangerous conflict in our neighborhoods. These laws try to fix something that was never broken. There has always been a legal defense for using deadly force if – and the ‘if’ is important – no safe retreat is available.”

Holder said the law has “victimized too many people.”

“By allowing and perhaps encouraging violent situations to escalate in public, such laws undermine public safety,” Holder continued. “The list of resulting tragedies is long and – unfortunately – has victimized too many who are innocent. It is our collective obligation – we must stand our ground – to ensure that our laws reduce violence, and take a hard look at laws that contribute to more violence than they prevent.”

First, I’d like to point out something to Mr. Holder.  “Stand Your Ground” laws only apply to actual cases of self defense.  His desire that you or I should have to try to get away from a criminal before being able to defend ourselves will not save innocent lives.  No, it will further empower criminals who will then know that they can have their way after you retreat.

Oregon Study Shows ObamaCare’s Medicaid Expansion Doesn’t Mean Healthier Americans

Obama signs the Affordable Care Act

The Obama Administration continues to insist that the Affordable Care Act will be good for Americans. With insurance subsidies and Medicaid expansion, they say that Americans will healthier. But is that true? According to a study out of Oregon, which expanded Medicaid in 2008, greater access to healthcare doesn’t mean that people will be healthier:

In 2008, the state of Oregon initiated an ambitious health care policy that allowed researchers to shed light on the effects of guaranteeing Medicaid coverage for low-income adults. The results have been closely followed in large part because insurance for the poor is a major component of the Affordable Care Act—aka Obamacare—that will soon be rolled out across the country.

White House to Further Involve Federal Government in Elections

ballot

As Americans were preparing to celebrate the Easter weekend, President Barack Obama quietly signed an executive order that establishes the “Presidential Commission of Election Administration.” This nine-member panel will, according to the release from the White House, make recommendations to promote the efficient administration of elections in order to ensure that all eligible voters have the opportunity to cast their ballots without undue delay.”

During the State of the Union address, President Obama addressed the reports of long lines at polling places around the country, using an example out of Florida, one of the areas of the country that experienced problems.

“We should follow the example of a North Miami woman named Desiline Victor.  When she arrived at her polling place, she was told the wait to vote might be six hours,” President Obama said during his speech to the joint session of Congress.  ”And as time ticked by, her concern was not with her tired body or aching feet, but whether folks like her would get to have their say.”

Hour after hour, a throng of people stayed in line in support of her,” he continued. “Because Desiline is 102 years old.  And they erupted in cheers when she finally put on a sticker that read ‘I Voted.’”

The commission, which will have six months to report its finding to the White House after its first meeting, will consider a number of points dealing with voter experience at the polls, including:

Florida House Committee, Speaker Reject ObamaCare’s Medicaid Expansion

On Monday, a select committee of the Florida House of Representatives rejected ObamaCare’s Medicaid expansion. Shortly thereafter, the speaker of the Florida House announced his opposition:

I am proud of the thoughtful, thorough and deliberative approach that our Select Committee took on the important issues related to Medicaid expansion and health exchanges. I received their recommendations and agree that expanding Medicaid and setting up a state exchange is not in the best interest of our state. We simply cannot count on the federal government to pay 100 percent of the cost for expansion. The facts show that healthcare costs will go up for many Floridians, while access to and quality of healthcare will go down. The ‘all or nothing’ approach that the Obama administration is offering will not work for our state. I know there will be continued discussion about this matter, and I look forward to exploring better policies for our state.

It looks like Medicaid expansion in Florida may not be the foregone conclusion that some people thought.

Zero Tolerance for Guns Gone Even More Stupid

Gun Free Zone

Schools throughout the nation adopted so-called “zero tolerance” rules dealing with guns in the wake of school shootings and gang violence back in the 1990’s.  They haven’t really accomplished a whole heck of a lot, but keep popping up in the news from time to time due to various idiotic points of the rule that will occasionally ban a kid for using his fingers as a gun, shaping his breakfast like a gun, or disciplining a child for wearing a t-shirt that has a picture of an American soldier on it.  However, the latest incident that, at least to me, appears to be related to these idiotic rules comes to us from Fort Myers, Florida.

This time, the incident actually did involve a gun, so there’s that.  However, the whole story is even more confounding:

A Florida high school student wrestled a loaded gun away from another teen on the bus ride home this week and was slapped with a suspension in return.

The 16-year-old Cypress Lake High student in Fort Myers, Fla. told WFTX-TV there was “no doubt” he saved a life after grappling for the loaded .22 caliber revolver being aimed point-blank at another student on Tuesday.

“I think he was really going to shoot him right then and there,” said the suspended student, not identified by WFTX because of safety concerns. “Not taking no pity.”

Where Environmentalism Officially Becomes Eco-Mentalism

It appears environmentalism has officially gone insane. In Florida, a man released several heart shaped balloons into the air as an expression of love to his girlfriend. And for that, the guy was arrested:

Anthony Brasfield saw romance when he released a dozen heart-shaped balloons into the sky over Dania Beach with his sweetie. A Florida Highway Patrol trooper saw a felony.

Brasfield, 40, and his girlfriend, Shaquina Baxter, were in the parking lot of the Motel 6 on Dania Beach Boulevard when he released the shiny red and silver mylar balloons and watched them float away Sunday morning.

Also watching the romantic gesture: an FHP trooper, who instead noted probable cause for an environmental crime.

Brasfield was charged with polluting to harm humans, animals, plants, etc. under the Florida Air and Water Pollution Control Act.

Seriously? We’re going to arrest people now because they released balloons into the air? What sort of joyless soul-sucking Dementors are the people who push for this kind of legislation?

The story notes at the end that Brasfield, if convicted, faces up to five years in prison. Five years for releasing balloons into the air to show his love to his significant other. If that’s not liberty-trampeling, un-American, and just plain immoral, I don’t know what it is.

Rick Scott’s ObamaCare Flip-Flop

Written by Michael F. Cannon, Director of Health Policy Studies at the Cato Institute. Posted with permission from Cato @ Liberty.

Word is that Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) has decided to throw his support behind, or at least drop his opposition to, ObamaCare’s Medicaid expansion. His formal announcement, which may come today, will receive much attention. Scott was an early opponent of ObamaCare. He parlayed that opposition into a bid for governor in 2010, and rode the anti-ObamaCare wave into office. Shortly after becoming governor, he announced he would not lift a finger to help the federal government implement the law. I followed all this pretty closely. I served on Scott’s gubernatorial transition team, at his invitation.

Now, it appears Scott doesn’t see the point in opposing the Medicaid expansion. Never mind that – according to my colleague Jagadeesh Gokhale, whom the Social Security Administration consults when making these types of projections – the expansion will cost Florida $20 billion over the first 10 years, and add 3 million Floridians to the Medicaid rolls. Never mind that many of those Floridians currently have private health insurance. Never mind that Medicaid will provide them inferior access to care. Never mind that expanding Medicaid would make those millions of voters dependent on government for their health care, and thus would expand the constituency for more government spending and higher taxes.


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