'Decline Is a Choice': DeSantis Goes Scorched Earth on Biden Admin in Fiery Inaugural Address


“Freedom lives here, in our great Sunshine State of Florida.”

Once again, Florida GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis shows how it’s done.

He demonstrated in his 26-minute inaugural speech Tuesday what a state can do in light of a lawless, out-of-control federal government.

Beginning his second term, the 44-year-old Republican, who has stood against federal decisions on immigration and COVID and taken on woke corporate and educational policies, contrasted accomplishments in Florida with Democratic states and cities and with the Biden administration.

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Freedom, DeSantis said, “lives in the dreams of the historic number of families who have moved from states across this country because they saw Florida as the land of liberty and the land of sanity.”

Florida leads the nation in in-migration, according to DeSantis, making it the fastest-growing state.

He noted that the ability of 50 individual states to pursue their own objectives represents “a laboratory of democracy.”

“These last few years have witnessed a great test of governing philosophies, as many jurisdictions pursued a much different path than we have pursued here in the state of Florida,” according to DeSantis.

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“The policies pursued by these states have sparked a mass exodus of productive Americans from these jurisdictions, with Florida serving as the most desired destination, a promised land of sanity.

“Many of these cities and states have embraced faddish ideology at the expense of enduring principles,” DeSantis continued, outlining things such as undercutting police and imposing heavy tax burdens ”to finance unfathomable levels of public spending.”

“They have harmed education by subordinating the interests of students and parents to partisan interest groups.

“They have imposed medical authoritarianism in the guise of pandemic mandates and restrictions that lack a scientific basis.

“This bizarre but prevalent ideology that permeates these policy measures purports to act in the name of justice for the marginalized, but it frowns upon American institutions,” DeSantis said.

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“It rejects merit and achievement,” he continued, “And it advocates identity essentialism.

“We reject this woke ideology,” DeSantis declared. “We seek normalcy, not philosophical lunacy! We will not allow reality, facts and truth to become optional! We will never surrender to the woke mob!

“Florida is where woke goes to die!,” DeSantis said, a proclamation met by a standing ovation.

In his speech, the governor went scorched earth on the Biden administration, noting Florida’s efforts were made difficult by the federal government.

He criticized federal inflationary spending, ideology-driven pandemic restrictions, erosion of freedom, stunting of commerce, open borders permitting importing of narcotics and criminals, and a restrictive energy policy that compromises national security.

“It has recklessly facilitated open borders,” the governor pointed out.

The federal government, DeSantis said, operates through a massive out-of-touch bureaucracy “that does not act on behalf of us, but instead looms over us and imposes its will upon us. The results of this have been predictably dismal.

“This has caused many to be pessimistic about the country’s future. Some even say that failure is inevitable.

“Florida is proof positive that we the people are not destined for failure,” according to DeSantis. “Decline is a choice. Success is attainable. And freedom is worth fighting for.”

That fight is more complex than before, coming from the entrenched Washington bureaucracy ,“jet-setters in Davos, and corporations wielding public power.

“But fight we must. We embrace our founding creed, that our rights are not granted by the courtesy of the state, but are endowed by the hand of the Almighty.

“We reject the idea that self-government can be subcontracted out to technocratic elites who reduce human beings to mere data points,” he said. “We insist on the restoration of time-tested constitutional principles, so that government of, by, and for the people shall not perish from this earth.”

DeSantis spoke in direct, simple, inspiring language as he issued his challenges and outlined recent successes of his administration as the state, compared to many, has gone its own way in standing up to fads and ideology.

And the governor promised more of the same in coming years. Assuming, of course, he remains governor and does not take another course of which some are speculating.

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Mike Landry, PhD, is a retired business professor. He has been a journalist, broadcaster and church pastor. He writes from Northwest Arkansas on current events and business history.
Mike Landry, PhD, is a retired business professor. He has been a journalist, broadcaster and church pastor. He writes from Northwest Arkansas on current events and business history.