A spokesman for Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has announced that the Sunshine State’s top executive will be boycotting NBC and its affiliates until Andrea Mitchell, one of the media conglomerate’s on-air talents, corrects what is being called a “blatant lie.”
The incident that sparked the boycott took place on February 17 when Mitchell interviewed Vice President Kamala Harris on her MSNBC show Andrea Mitchell Reports.
Mitchell asked Harris, according to The Epoch Times, “What does Governor Ron DeSantis not know about black history and the black experience when he says that slavery and the aftermath of slavery should not be taught to Florida’s schoolchildren?”
The backdrop to Mitchell’s question was the recent rejection of an Advanced Placement (AP) African American History course from Florida high schools on the basis that its curriculum violated established Florida law.
At issue with the specific course was the inclusion of various topics that conflict with the state prohibition on the teaching of Critical Race Theory, as well as any instruction designed to make a student feel personally responsible for “past wrong based on their own race, sex, or national origin.”
The commissioner of the Florida Department of Education, Manny Diaz Jr., has aggressively defended the decision to reject this specific course.
Diaz tweeted an image with six examples of alleged violations of Florida law within the course, along with a statement that read, “Despite the lies from the Biden White House, Florida rejected an AP course filled with Critical Race Theory and other obvious violations of Florida law.”
Despite the lies from the Biden White House, Florida rejected an AP course filled with Critical Race Theory and other obvious violations of Florida law. We proudly require the teaching of African American history. We do not accept woke indoctrination masquerading as education. pic.twitter.com/Anw7Ui2JJv
— Manny Diaz Jr. (@SenMannyDiazJr) January 20, 2023
“We proudly require the teaching of African American history. We do not accept woke indoctrination masquerading as education,” Diaz continued.
The relevant section in Florida’s “Required Instruction” statutes reads, “The history of African Americans, including the history of African peoples before the political conflicts that led to the development of slavery, the passage to America, the enslavement experience, abolition, and the contributions of African Americans to society.”
After Mitchell’s interview with Harris, DeSantis’ press secretary, Bryan Griffin, issued a standing response to all bookers and producers for NBC and MSNBC media outlets denying their requests. Griffin said the standing response will remain in effect until Andrea Mitchell apologizes and NBC’s “track record improves.”
“There will be no consideration of anything related to NBC Universal or its affiliates until and at least Andrea Mitchell corrects the blatant lie she made about the governor,” Griffin wrote in his standing response.
Since the boycott has been issued, Mitchell has attempted to mitigate the fallout but has stopped short of an apology.
“In my interview last Friday with Vice President Harris, I was imprecise in summarizing Governor DeSantis’s position about teaching slavery in schools,” said Mitchell, per Real Clear Politics. “Governor DeSantis is not opposed to teaching the fact of slavery in schools.”
“But he has opposed the teaching of an African American studies curriculum as well as the use of some authors and source materials that historians and teachers say makes it all but impossible for students to understand the broader historic and political context behind slavery and its aftermath in the years since,” she concluded.
Mitchell, for her part, has not identified these historians or teachers.
In response to Mitchell’s statement, Griffin told Fox News Digital, “I saw her ‘post script’ and it’s a typical non-apology response that doubles down on her lie,” he said.
DeSantis, a potential contender for the Republican nomination for the presidency in 2024, has recently released a new book and has been traveling across the country, including a stop in Illinois that prompted the state’s governor, J.B. Pritzker, a Democrat, to weigh in on this controversy.
In a letter to the College Board, the organization that creates all AP curricula, Pritzker said, “Regardless of some leaders’ efforts, ignoring and censoring the accurate reporting of history will not change the realities of the country in which we live. In Illinois, we will not accept this watering down of history.”
“One Governor should not have the power to dictate the facts of U.S. history. In Illinois, we reject any curriculum modifications designed to appease extremists like the Florida Governor and his allies,” Pritzker concluded.
Lying that creates more ill will and divisiveness in order to further a political agenda is a special kind of villainy.
I thought woke went to Florida to die. It seems to be living there.