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Political fiefdoms unfold the politics of unsavory tactics

Derek Joy

Derek Joy

Political fiefdoms unfold the politics of unsavory tactics

By Derek Joy

Let me tell you a story!

By now, the people of Florida City know if Mayor Otis Wallace won his re-election bid against former City Councilman and former mayoral challenger Israel Andrews.

Just as that election neared its climax, suspended Sweetwater Mayor Manny Marono was sentenced to 40 months in federal prison. While suspended Homestead Mayor and Miami Lakes Mayor Michael Pizzi await trial. Each was caught in the same FBI public corruption sting operation.

A shift in emphasis finds Miami Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez reeling from the embarrassment Miami Marlins President David Samson created. Samson, appearing on a TV reality show, made a mockery of local government for having contributed some $350-million to the construction costs of Marlins Park.

Then Mayor Carlos Alvarez and Commissioner Natacha Seijas lost their seats in a recall election engineered by Miami businessman Nor-man Braman, who did not seek to re-call those members of the city of Miami Commission.

Another shift in emphasis highlights Broward County Mayor Barbara Sharieff facing a potential challenge from Miramar vice Mayor Alex-andra Davis.

Some speculate that Broward County Commissioner Dale Holness is pushing Davis’s campaign. Others speculate that it is a West Indian battle brewing – being Sharieff, Holness and Davis who is also from Jamaica.

Ah, but, they, like the Hispanics in Miami Dade County, should focus on issues of importance to America, and not the Banana Republic Politics. They should also consider that Davis is most likely wasting time and money in challenging Sharieff.

Imagine much of the same in going on in Florida’s 410 chartered municipalities – 283 cities, 108 towns and 19 villages.

Ditto for the 67 counties, in which Duval County doesn’t have its own government. The city of Jacksonville governs Duval County. And Wakulla County is the only county whose county seat – Crawfordville – is unincorporated.

So, think about it for a moment. None of this kind of information is included on the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) that Florida’s public schools students must pass in order to progress and graduate with a high school diploma.

Yes. That is the pressure that the Florida Legislature puts on children. No. They won’t legislate comparable accountability requirements on those holding elected office.

There is no requisite competency examination for any elected office in Florida. None, yet the very people who legislate such requirements can continue to do so without demonstrating knowledge comparable to what children are required to demonstrate in the public schools.

Equally as discriminatory is the fact that private school students don’t have to pass the FCAT in order to progress and graduate with a high school diploma. Surely, that presents a constitutionality argument.

Reason being, on May 17, 1954, the U. S. Supreme Court, in its landmark case of Brown v. (Kansas) Board of Education, struck down the practice of separate but equal public schools and outlawed segregation in public schools.

Consequently, the FCAT requirement of public school students and not for private school students allows economic discrimination in violation of the separate but equal practice. Even more so, when private schools receive public money under any pretense.

Wouldn’t it be interesting if the voters in each of the 410 municipalities in Florida’s 67 counties demanded the same kind of accountability of elected officials as that demanded of public school students?




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