Ron DeSantis pledges $1M to boost security at Jacksonville HBCU following racist shooting

'We are not going to allow our HBCUs to be targeted by these people.'

Gov. Ron DeSantis promised Jacksonville residents that “help is on the way” after three Black people were killed by a White man at a Dollar General near Edward Waters University.

On Monday, he outlined what some of that help will look like, with funding coming to a local historically Black university.

“I’m pleased to be able to announce we’re going to be able to do $1 million to Edward Waters (University) to increase security on campus,” DeSantis said.

“As I’ve said for the last couple of days, we are not going to allow our HBCUs to be targeted by these people. And so we’re going to provide security help with them.”

In addition to the financial commitment, the state has the Florida Department of Law Enforcement “on site today evaluating security on campus and making recommendations for any additional infrastructure improvements.”

Additionally, $100,000 from Volunteer Florida will go to “the charity that’s supporting the victims’ families,” DeSantis said, vowing to “continue to work with those folks in the days and weeks ahead.”

Rep. Angie Nixon, who represents the part of Jacksonville containing the university, had seen her budget appropriations vetoed by the Governor in the 2023 Legislative Session. She was not mollified by the announcement.

“For it to take murder for him to dig into his overflowing coffers is appalling,” she said Monday afternoon, calling on DeSantis to “actively work toward undoing the racist system he’s helped uphold and grow.”

DeSantis’ first visit to the New Town neighborhood in years was not without controversy. He was booed by some attendees at the Sunday vigil, which was attended by a variety of local and state leaders. The jeers only abated when Jacksonville City Council member Ju’Coby Pittman appealed to the crowd to quiet down so he could speak.

The Governor said Sunday that a “major league scumbag (came) from Clay County up here,” and that “what he did is totally unacceptable in the state of Florida.”

“We are not going to let people be targeted based on their race. We are going to stand up and we are going to do what we need to do to make sure that evil does not triumph in the state of Florida. And that means we are going to work with Edward Waters so that they have whatever security they need in Florida,” DeSantis said.

“We’ve already given a lot of money to Jewish Day schools because they’ve been targeted with antisemitism. Well, let me tell you this. You are not going to target HBCUs in the state of Florida and get away with it. We’re going to hold you accountable,” DeSantis added. “Just know that the state of Florida stands with the community. Help is on the way.”

On Monday afternoon, EWU officials discussed the incident and the appropriation.

President A. Zachary Faison noted that while none of those murdered were students at the school, the killer did “come to the EWU campus some minutes before his murderous rampage,” parking in a faculty-staff lot and putting on “some type of gloves and tactical armored vest.”

Security approached the killer, who “immediately fled” the parking lot “at a high rate of speed,” avoiding a tragedy like the one at Charleston, South Carolina’s Emanuel Church, where white supremacist Dylann Roof killed nine Black people attending a Bible study in 2015.

Faison promised no “whitewashing” or “deodorizing” of history in his remarks, which spanned time from the end of the Civil War to the present day.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


  • Michael K

    August 28, 2023 at 9:24 am

    Build the police state: the fascist dream.

  • Earl Pitts "Earl Told Ya So" American

    August 28, 2023 at 9:38 am

    Good mornting America,
    This Million Dollar security boost will go a long way to increasing security in Duvall Counties Black neighborhoods in the wake of the recent election of the Dook 4 Brains Deegan administration.
    Things would just get progressively worse for our vulnerable Black citizens under the current local Dook 4 Brains Leftist Administration if not for Desantis stepping up to save our vulnerable black citizens.
    Best of all none of the 1M can be co-opped into Dook 4 Brains useless local kickback money pits.
    The entire vulnerable Black communitty thanks you America’s Govornor,

  • TJC

    August 28, 2023 at 9:46 am

    “We are not going to let people be targeted based on their race.”
    Except when it comes to them voting, then all bets are off. And targeting people because of their sexual orientation is okay with DeSantis also. And targeting any people or businesses that support the rights of LGBTQ people is a must.
    It’s nice that he said nice things yesterday, but he has already shown us who he is.

    • Earl Pitts "Earl Told Ya So" American

      August 28, 2023 at 9:55 am

      Good mornting TJC,
      This is not the time or place for Dook 4 Brains Leftist rants. Show some respect for our local Duvall Blacks TJC.
      Let this be a warning to all Dook 4 Brains Leftists who wish to use this local tragic situation to post their leftist screed.
      Dont do it,

      • FloridaPatriot

        August 28, 2023 at 2:02 pm

        DuhDantis is only pandering for votes. He does not care at all to protect African Americans.

        • Earl Pitts American

          August 28, 2023 at 2:44 pm

          Good afternoon FloridaPatriot,
          You are hereby chastized for using this sad situation to post your Dook 4 Brains Leftist screed after I, Earl Pitts American, told you not to do that.
          You are hereby ordered to submit a $500.00 donation to The Earl Pitts American Fan Club in order to have your chastisement lifted.
          Thank you FLPAT,

  • Thomas Kaspar

    August 28, 2023 at 1:04 pm

    Race baiting for clicks .

    • Why?

      August 31, 2023 at 12:31 am

      Thomas, it is not “race baiting for clicks” to report the Governor’s response and pledge of $1M direct contribution to a Northeast Florida HBCU. It was breaking news. The reporters work to bring you the news which you read free.

  • FloridaPatriot

    August 28, 2023 at 2:00 pm

    WOW…Talk about quick pandering for votes.

  • Tjb

    August 28, 2023 at 10:00 pm

    Forget the money Ron. Stop the hate and fear that vomit from your mouth.

    You promotes a culture of hate towards people of color and the LGBTQ community.
    This type of dehumanizing creates an environment for these horrific acts of violence

  • Sonja Fitch

    August 29, 2023 at 4:23 am

    The crowd that heard the Desantis announcement BOOED Desantis! Desantis only came to get the free pr for HIS goal of running for President. Cover the Booing!!!!

  • Richard Russell

    August 29, 2023 at 3:29 pm

    Enough of the race BS – all lives matter and the facts are, more whites are killed by blacks than the current narrative of more blacks being killed by whites. Equal Justice is not being pursued because as is often the case in sports, those who can’t” teach. In the legal profession those who are lousy lawyers become judges. If that is not true how come they along with the District Attorneys are complicit in the destruction of our Legal System, or it’s just plane corruption! We should not be keeping count on who’s killing who and reform the Justice system by expelling the incompetent and/or dirtbag participants (ie Judges and Prosecutors). Incompetent attorneys should find another profession, not be kicked upstairs as beneficiaries of the “Peter Principle.”

Comments are closed.


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Drew Dixon, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Cole Pepper, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Drew Wilson, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Sign up for Sunburn