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Wednesday, January 25, 2023

What is the difference between manslaughter, rape, carjacking, and giving a book to a student some crazy parent might not like?

On the surface, it might seem like a lot, but as far as punishments go, they are exactly the same in Florida, if DeSantis gets his way.*

A third-degree felony in Florida is an offense punishable by up to 5 years in prison, a $5000 fine, and 5 years of probation.

It’s not just imprisonment, probation, or fines either, felons in Florida lose rights.

Florida law deprives convicted felons of certain civil rights, including the right to vote, serve on a jury, hold public office, and restricts the issuance and renewal of some professional licenses, such as real estate and insurance.

Now you might be saying felons can vote. Well, that was certainly the intent of the voters, but it hasn’t worked out that way because decades of one-party rule have made the republican party believe they can do whatever they want, and %$@# the law.

Here are some other rights that may be in jeopardy because a parent doesn’t appreciate “And Tango Makes Three,” the true story of two male penguins raising a chick - a book that has actually been taken off bookshelves in Florida:

From Smith and Eulo, attorneys at law

Consequences of a Third-Degree Felony Conviction
A felony conviction is something that will follow a person throughout their lives, and have ongoing effects on everything from education to employment to voting and gun rights.

Convicted felons may not be eligible for federal student loans, Pell grants and other financial aid. This inability to take advantage of educational and training opportunities can severely inhibit competitiveness on the job market, particularly if the person also failed to finish high school.

Convicted felons can struggle to find work, since most employers will want to know about the charge and take it into consideration when hiring. For promotions and higher-level jobs, a felony conviction can be a death blow to career advancement.

Most apartment buildings, and certainly luxury spaces perform extensive background investigations, and even a third-degree felony conviction can lead to a marked inability to secure adequate living accommodations. This ongoing result of even a low-level felony conviction can conceivably lead to chronic homelessness.

Voting Rights
Those convicted of a felony in the state of Florida are not eligible to vote until their prison sentence and/or probation time has been completed, and all fines, court costs and victim restitution has been fully paid.

Gun Rights
It is illegal in the state of Florida for convicted felons to own firearms including muzzle loaded guns, unless their civil right has been restored by the Clemency Board, or the weapon qualifies as an antique firearm under Florida Statute 709.001(1).

Okay, “And Tango Makes Three” may not send you to the big house. Still, there are plenty of age-appropriate books with age-appropriate themes that can, and don’t take my word for it; look at all the books that are either being taken down from shelves across Florida and the ones that aren’t allowed to be put up.

All so that some fascists can gin up their willfully ignorant base.

* There are a variety of crimes that are considered felony offenses in the state of Florida. These crimes include both violent and non-violent offenses.

In DeSantis Dystopia, teachers providing unapproved books is now included in this list of felony offenses.

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