Ron DeSantis Proves Freedom Means Something Else In Florida With Draconian DOT Bridge Lighting Mandate

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Florida’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis declared a so-called Freedom Summer for the state kicking off May 27 and running through September 2. Freedom, as I understand it, means that a people can act, speak, or think as they want without the restraint of a governing body. So that must mean DeSantis is killing some long-unnecessary law, like the requirement to have an operators’ license to ride a skateboard, or the ban on unmarried women parachuting on Sundays. No, instead Freedom Summer is a mandate aimed at the state’s Department of Transportation, imposing new American Flag-colored lighting mandates for bridges.

It doesn’t take much grey matter between your ears to come to the conclusion that this is the governor-and-one-time-presidential-candidate’s way of preventing many of the state’s bridges from their traditional presentation of rainbow colors during June’s Pride Month.

“The bridge lights were about celebrating diversity and inclusion, which will continue to happen in our communities,” said Carlos Guillermo Smith, Equality Florida’s senior policy adviser. “LGBTQ Floridians will proudly raise our flags even higher and our lights will only shine brighter in the darkness they’ve created.”


The Ringling Causeway Bridge in Sarasota (pictured above) typically lights up in Pride colors for June, but also turns yellow for Women’s Equality Day, among other cause and awareness days. Some bridges turn red, black, and green for Juneteenth, for example. It seems difficult to comprehend someone being offended by the colors of a bridge, and to hide such a clearly hateful mandate behind the auspices of love of country is despicable.

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