The 1964 Civil Rights Act—the racists that lead the Florida Democratic Party might want to read it.
By Jim Bleyer
If the Florida Democratic Party doesn’t clean up its act—and soon—it might as well gird for a November calamity.
The Blue Wave that pundits expect nationally could amount to a trickle in the Sunshine State. This in spite of Democrats holding a registration edge, albeit a narrow one.
Corporatist Democrats have controlled the party for decades. The end result: getting pounded by Republicans in statewide races and ceding both houses of the state legislature by large majorities.
The arrogant chairwoman of the state party, Terrie Rizzo, continues to foster racism while her cohorts in power attempt to suppress dissent. Rizzo and her gang’s main goal is to maintain party power, collect money from corporatists, and stifle minorities and the progressive wing.
The latest: a proposed confidentiality clause that would essentially protect sexual abusers and racists.
Resentment over Rizzo’s inaction in excommunicating racists and her encouragement of suppression is boiling over in Duval County. There, unhappy Democrats have taken to barraging social media with their discontent over the Rizzo regime and local committeewoman Lisa King.
Jimmy Deininger, one of the most vocal critics, has bombarded Facebook with lengthy discourses accusing local and state leaders of failing to eradicate racism from the state committee.
“Because the Florida Democratic Party refused to address multiple requests concerning the validity of the ‘Lisa King confidentiality’ bylaw clause Kimberly Love and I were forced to file a official grievance to FDP Chair Terrie Rizzo via United States Postal Service certified mail,” Deininger stated.
The “confidentiality” clause was introduced after John Parker, King’s husband, was forced to resign after Politico Florida and other news outlets exposed his racist statements.
The confidentiality clause would, in effect, protect abusers and muzzle the voices of complainants from seeking their first amendment rights, according to Deininger.
Kimberly Doctor, a nurse (no kidding), expressed deep concern that the confidentiality clause would protect sexual abusers. Her letter appears below:
“If the FDP and Party leaders around this state refuse to hear the many calls from members and elected officials like Reggie Brown calling for Chair King’s resignation and a total restructuring of DCDEC leadership they should expect multiple grievances exposing further racism, corruption, and collusion in this Party,” Deininger warned.
Duval County isn’t the only region dissatisfied with Rizzo’s leadership. Introduced at a Democratic gala in Hillsborough County last Saturday, Rizzo’s reception was something short of a golf clap. Activists on the county Democratic Executive Committee oppose the weighted voting that gives Rizzo’s Politburo disproportionate representation and influence.
The state Democratic apparatus has always been slow to address racism within its ranks. Former Democratic state party chairman Stephen Bittel made disparaging remarks about black legislators at a major party fundraiser last June 17. He apologized and then the Florida Democratic Party carried on as usual.
Five months later Bittel resigned in the face of sexual harassment allegations by six women. A party leader exhibiting racism didn’t qualify as a capital offense in the eyes of his minions.
Condo commando Rizzo hasn’t made any racist remarks publicly but condoning bigotry amounts to a transgression of equal proportions.