Leftists ‘occupy’ Florida Capitol to demand meeting with DeSantis, arrested when they refuse to leave

Florida’s Capitol Police arrested 14 activists in front of Governor Ron DeSantis’s Capitol office on Wednesday, after the group refused to leave come closing time.

According to the Tallahassee Democrat, the Dream Defenders, a liberal human rights group formed in 2012 after the death of Trayvon Martin, organized a sit-in protest in front of the governor’s office to protest the expansion of the Parental Rights in Education law that banned the discussion of sex and gender to K-3rd grade kids.

Under HB1069, which is awaiting DeSantis’s signature, the prohibition would extend from Kindergarten through the 8th grade, the Daily Mail reports. Last month, the Florida State Board of Education voted to ban talk of sexual identity and orientation in all public schools through high school graduation.

The sit-in began in the afternoon with dozens of protestors demanding a meeting with DeSantis, but only 14 remained, arms locked, to face off with the authorities.


Gretl Plessinger, a spokesperson for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, explained the reason behind the arrests.

“Once the building closes, unless you have an office in the Capitol, you’re not allowed to be here,” Plessinger said.

Florida Capitol Polic officers, armed with zip ties and handcuffs, were joined by the state’s Highway Patrol and members of Florida Fish and Wildlife to put a stop to the protest. The activists were charged with misdemeanor trespass and booked into Leon County Jail.

Nailah Summers-Polite, co-executive director of Dream Defenders, blasted DeSantis for failing to meet with them.

“DeSantis likes to meet with his donors, the people who voted with him, his little pals, but he seems not to want to face the people who don’t actually like him,” she said. “If he won’t face us, he shouldn’t be the governor.”

Summers-Polite took issue with the governor’s recent trips away from the Sunshine State.

“Florida is on fire, and he’s gallivanting around the country and around the world while the legislators under his boot are passing really harmful legislation,” she said.

In addition to eliminating the topic of gender identity and sexual orientation from the classrooms, the new law also makes it easier for parents to pull books they deem to be inappropriate from the library shelves, and teachers will be restricted from using preferred pronouns that don’t match up with students’ genders at birth.

“This bill promotes parental rights, transparency, and state standards in Florida schools. It requires that lessons for Florida’s students are age-appropriate, focused on education, and free from sexualization and indoctrination,” Republican Florida State Rep. Adam Anderson previously stated, according to the Daily Mail.

On Twitter, many are hoping these Capitol protestors will receive the same “justice” those arrested at the nation’s Capitol on Jan. 6 were dealt.

“Throw all their a**es in jail!” exclaimed one user. “INSURECTION! That is their words… Use it against them!”



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