Dream Defenders or dreams pretenders
Dream Defenders or dreams pretenders
By Lucius Gantt
The student organized group that is opposing Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law is picking up a tremendous amount of support. However, it is not the rock star type of support depicted by the imperialist press.
By now, we all know singers, preachers and rappers have visited Florida’s Capitol to speak to student members of the “Dream Defenders” that have been “sitting in” Florida Governor Rick Scott’s office for more than three solid weeks.
The students are still there but the singers, preachers and rappers are gone!
The students occupying the Governor’s office seem a lot like the people that occupied Wall Street. Both groups were well intentioned. Both groups were determined, caring and dedicated.
However, neither group had a workable plan, a viable strategy, necessary resources or a clearly attainable goal.
If a blanket repeal of the SYG law by a Republican controlled legislature is the ultimate goal, it will never happen!
The best the students can hope for is a Stand Your Ground “dog and pony show”! That is what committee meetings called to discuss an issue that has already been decided and determined are labeled as by governmental experts and political lobbyists.
The student activists at the Capitol are supported by local activists and the former community freedom fighting members of such groups as the Malcolm X Liberation Front and The Black Federation Alliance who are very proud that this group of young people stepped up and did something.
So, in that regard, The Gantt Report would like to help.
Any change in Florida law must be voted on by the Florida Legislature. Students need to have a bill drawn up that will address their concerns whether it is repeal, change or something else in between. The students must have sponsors in both the Florida House and the Florida Senate and the student’s proposed bill must be signed into law by Florida Governor Rick Scott.
It is not enough to have a good cause, a right issue, or a just piece of legislation to accomplish a goal of changing any law, you must prevail!
If the Legislative Black Caucus can’t get their own priorities passed it is reasonable to believe a group of students will have trouble getting desired legislation passed in the Florida Legislature also.
I was a lobbyist when State Representatives Tony Hill and Kendrick Meek sat in Governor Jeb Bush’s office years ago. I was even alive when Black college students across the nation sat in at lunch counters.
Well, some students that sat in at lunch counters were beaten and or jailed before lunch counters were desegregated. Bush told law enforcers in graphic language to throw Hill and Meeks out of his office.
The Gantt Report wants the students to have a successful protest. There is no shame in reorganizing and regrouping to name goals that can be accomplished such as setting up groups to protect young people that have to travel at night or raising money to defeat legislators that refuse to change unjust laws.
Not only will sit ins not accomplish stated goals. Sitting in may just cause violence if students are forcibly removed from the Capitol and jailed and believe me one day they will have to leave, voluntarily or by force.
We are proud of the student “Dream Defenders” for taking direct action when other young people merely sought to make Facebook posts.
But success is always the best revenge! Symbolism is sensational and generates press and puppets that want media attention but it doesn’t work.
Remember when the people in Mississippi and other southern states started the plans to march on Washington in the late sixties and then the preachers and the politicians “took over” the march? That is when Martin Luther King, Jr., made his I Have A Dream speech.
If you want to accomplish something in the Florida Legislature, assemble some of the state’s most experienced lobbyists and political activists and come up with a viable political strategy.
If you don’t figure out something that will work, history will look at you not as Dream Defenders but as Dream Pretenders! (Buy Gantt’s latest book “Beast Too: Dead Man Writing” at any major book store and contact Lucius at www.allworldconsultants.net)