Total Pageviews

Search This Blog

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

It's class warfare in Florida and the poor and middle class are losing

From the Huffington Post

by Shawna Vechner

It's official. The newly-proposed budget from Florida's newly-crowned king has been unveiled and the agenda is nothing short of class warfare.

Medical care for seniors is too expensive. The unemployed are not trying hard enough. Money spent on domestic violence and rape victims is a waste. Parents that cannot afford private school are not worth considering. The homeless programs should be completely exterminated... I mean eradicated.

Forget a birth certificate. Floridians who elected this man in the hopes of him representing our best interests apparently should have demanded an eye exam. This plan to "open Florida for business" is the most short-sighted monstrosity we've seen in decades.

Pretend for a moment that the strategy of luring big companies with thousands of jobs to Florida is a solid plan (even in a vacuum) and ignore for the time being the fact that EVERY state is working to woo the same companies for the same reasons. Let's talk only about the future quality of life for those of us here now. You know, the Floridians.

What will crime rates look like when fifty thousand homeless people have nowhere to go and nothing to eat? Would a pan handling ban be any match for the human instinct to survive? How big of a deterrent is prison when it means having shelter and meals on a consistent basis?

Of course, the prison budget is in danger too. Perhaps they could be rehabilitated to not crave food.

How fast will our police officers respond when something does happen? Keep in mind there will less of them and they will be working for less money. Also, they will be busy dealing with the increase in domestic violence fatalities and repeat rape offenders.

I know my job performance would suffer if I just took a pay cut for the pension program.

But, hey, we'll have these new companies here, right? However, with a failing education system and an end to the state's scholarship programs (and the double-whammy of the inevitable tuition hikes) our residents won't be qualified enough for those jobs. People will have to move here to fill the higher-skilled positions. Those are the ones that pay more.

Maybe we will be allowed to wait on them when they arrive to make ends meet.

Speaking of people moving here, how badly are we taking our senior population for granted? Florida doesn't have the market cornered on a warmer climate. If they cannot receive proper medical care or go to an emergency room without a twelve-hour wait, they just won't retire here. The last time I checked, seniors have pretty big purchasing power.

And they vote.

I am not a "snobby liberal" just because I do not believe that people who suffer should just be told to fend for themselves. I should not have the label of "Obama Elitist" spat at me simply because I want for every child to have at least a fighting chance at a future that doesn't involve back-breaking labor. It's not unpatriotic to take a realistic look at a diverse and fractured population and want to make an earnest attempt to find a way for us to make it work better.

The last time I checked Darwin didn't build this country. Immigrants and Native Americans and former slaves and inventors and artists and, yes, wealthy business visionaries did.

I am deeply concerned about the callousness that this budget shows our fellow human beings. I am scared about what this could mean for our state's struggling middle class. I am frightened at how long it might take to reverse the damage this will do to our state and to our spirit if things proceed on this path.

I think I'll have that cake now.

Follow Shawna Vercher on Twitter:

No comments:

Post a Comment