Florida Gov. DeSantis declares war on ‘woke’ culture and calls it a war on truth

In a campaign stop in Iowa, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis provided his definition of the term “woke” in response to former President Donald Trump’s comment that many people struggle to define it. DeSantis characterized it as a form of cultural Marxism and a war on truth.

U.S. Republican presidential candidate and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks at the “Roast and Ride” event hosted by U.S. Senator Joni Ernst while campaigning in Des Moines, Iowa, U.S. June 3, 2023.(REUTERS)

During an interview with NBC correspondent Dasha Burns, DeSantis explained that wokeness entails placing identity politics ahead of merit and achievement. He argued that this ideology has corrupted institutions and infected society. The governor proudly declared that Florida is the state where “woke goes to die,” emphasizing his commitment to fighting against it.

DeSantis has incorporated the concept of wokeness into his career and campaign, even introducing the controversial “Stop WOKE Act” in Florida. The law aimed to combat what he labeled as “woke indoctrination” by prohibiting instruction that could make individuals feel personally responsible for historical wrongdoings based on their race, sex, or national origin. However, the law faced legal challenges and portions of it were blocked due to concerns over free speech and vagueness.

By defining “woke” as a cultural Marxism and a war on truth, DeSantis aligns himself with conservative critics who view wokeness as undermining American ideals and freedom. Republicans have used the term broadly to encompass progressive ideologies and actions that they believe go against their values.

The term “woke” has been at the center of the culture war, with debates surrounding issues like transgender participation in sports. Critics argue that allowing transgender girls and women to compete against biological females creates an unfair advantage. Swimmer Riley Gaines has been a vocal opponent of this practice.

DeSantis’s remarks come as he positions himself as a top contender for the Republican presidential nomination in 2024. His firm opposition to certain societal changes resonates with dedicated supporters who see it as crucial to preserving traditional values. The ongoing discussion surrounding the term “woke” underscores the diverse perspectives within the Republican Party as it refines its agenda for the forthcoming election cycle.

As the discourse regarding wokeness and its consequences evolves, DeSantis’s interpretation of the concept showcases his dedication to addressing what he perceives as a societal issue. The impact of his stance on voters and its potential influence on his political trajectory is yet to be fully determined.

Read More: Florida Gov. DeSantis declares war on ‘woke’ culture and calls it a war on truth

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