Senate passes bill mandating teaching of communism in Florida schools

a group of rising hand, abstract, idea, conceptual image
Florida students may learn about redistribution of wealth along with readin', writin', and arithmetic.

Students in Florida schools are one step closer to mandatory communism history classes starting in kindergarten, after SB 1264 was passed by a 25-7 vote in the Senate.

Meanwhile, a House version was temporarily postponed Friday just minutes after the Senate measure passed.

The bills are similar: Sen. Jay Collins’ bill is entitled “History of Communism” while Rep. Chuck Brannan’s companion HB 1349 has a loftier title: “History and Instruction of Political and Socio-economic Systems.”

But for practical purposes, the bills are more similar than different.

They both require students to receive instruction on the history of communism beginning in the 2026-27 academic year in what is billed as an age-appropriate and developmentally-appropriate way.

They would also compel the creation of a museum of history of communism, create the Institute for Freedom in Americas at Miami Dade College, and rename Adam Smith Center for Study of Economic Freedom as the Adam Smith Center for Economic Freedom. Collins said it was because the bill was about “freedom” and the center would help “educate those truths in a well-intended, well-thought-out manner.”

In the Senate Friday, Democrats peppered Collins with questions about the legislation ahead of the vote.

Sen. Tina Polsky wondered why this curriculum was needed.

The sponsor said it was important to “teach the truth about this,” given Florida’s immigrant population includes many refugees from communist countries, and given that many young people don’t understand what communism is about.

“We don’t want bread lines,” the sponsor said.

Sen. Bobby Powell pressed Collins on the interchangeable use of “communism” and “socialism,” which led the sponsor to note that “socialism does often lead to communism” and communism leads to “totalitarianism and death” and the “pain train.”

Sen. Jason Pizzo described his time in China and Cuba as teaching him “we live in the greatest damn country in the world,” adding that he’s voting for the bill.

There is a key party split on these bills among actual voters, meanwhile.

Polling conducted by Sachs Media found Republicans were overwhelmingly supportive (74%) of an effort to teach K-12 students about the “horrors of communism.” By comparison, only 41% of Democrats believe kids need a crash course on Soviet genocide.

A.G. Gancarski

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


11 comments

  • Dont Say FLA

    March 1, 2024 at 3:30 pm

    The redistribution of wealth that should concern students in USA is the one where worker compensation barely keeps pace with inflation while all the money that used to go for raises back when America was “great” now go to the hundreds of millions of dollars salaries paid to CEOs for being such good boys and doing such a great job, but taking no actual risk themselves like people used to have to do as business founders and owners to be able to take home as much bacon as today’s CEOs are free fed.

    • Worshiping the past does not make it present

      March 1, 2024 at 6:41 pm

      Second that. US News rankings for states for 2024 shows Florida’s scores for economic opportunity and the Gini index at the bottom of the country, on par with New York and California (degree to which wealth is concentrated rather than dispersed in a given population, measuring extremes between rich and poor, as an indicator of all kinds of economic health markers). So that has a snowball effect and it gets to where things start breaking and you end up looking like a banana republic or a dystopia. We’ve seen it before. Combined with draconian social measures that control the underclass, and you’ve got a recipe for some messed up stuff. So by all means, let’s teach kids what life was like under Eisenhower. We’ll leave out those pesky lessons from the 20’s and 30’s, the entire civil rights era, and the 70’s. And the endless wars. We’ll leave out everything but WWII, which America almost didn’t fight in. And how Reagan ruined the country with huge deficits and deregulation even though the USSR was going to fall anyway. And don’t mention what’s happened to the manufacturing sector since NAFTA or what’s happening now and about to with AI. Just stick to Eisenhower. Pre-Civil Rights movement (who’s James Crow?!). Women at home making babies living on one person’s salary. Ok, problem solved.

      • MH/Duuuval

        March 2, 2024 at 12:36 pm

        In 2017 the Trump tax cuts slashed the top corporate tax rate from 35% to 21% and reined in taxation for foreign profits. The ITEP report looked at the first five years the law was in effect. It concluded that in that time, most profitable corporations paid “considerably less” than 21% because of loopholes and special breaks the law either left in place or introduced.

        From 2018 through 2022, 342 companies in the study paid an average effective income tax rate of just 14.1%. Nearly a quarter of those companies—87 of them—paid effective tax rates of under 10%. Fifty-five of them (16% of the 342 companies), including T-Mobile, DISH Network, Netflix, General Motors, AT&T, Bank of America, Citigroup, FedEx, Molson Coors, and Nike, paid effective tax rates of less than 5%.

        Twenty-three corporations, all of them profitable, paid no federal tax over the five year period. One hundred and nine corporations paid no federal tax in at least one of the five years. — Heather Cox Richardson blog, today

  • Julia

    March 1, 2024 at 4:30 pm

    Earning $29,000. When you’re ready to give it some serious thought, start with some of the most respectable businesses that provide real work-from-home opportunities. In order to locate the ideal remote employment, ensure that the positions you apply for are affiliated cx30 with reputable businesses.

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  • Nazi Floriduh

    March 1, 2024 at 5:50 pm

    What a joke. They ban African American studies, Women Studies, do away with DEI because they are scared of anyone not male and white, support Russia and Putin killing his enemies and developed Project 2025 ( available on line) to turn America into a Taliban run state .

  • Nope

    March 1, 2024 at 7:04 pm

    Nice in theory but does anyone believe this curriculum will be historically accurate? Kids need to learn real history and economics, warts and all. Ie, the mechanisms of politics and profits, corruption, greed, power, and control that permeate all systems and human history. The idea that they want to push confectionery statist propaganda in defense of their own cronyism is just kind of mind boggling. And no I’m not a commie pinko or a bot. Just someone who’s read a few books. Yeah, dangerous.

    • MH/Duuuval

      March 1, 2024 at 9:46 pm

      Jason Pizzo doesn’t get that there is no difference basically among one-party authoritarian states — regardless of the stated ideology. Next thing you know Pizzo will be voting for Dee and his mentor DJT.

  • Michael K

    March 2, 2024 at 11:23 am

    And where does socialism fit in? You know, like the Social Security, and Medicare that Republicans have been trying to eliminate for decades?

  • My Take

    March 2, 2024 at 11:29 pm

    K-3
    “Look children, look at this picture of “Comandante” Castro and his big smelly cigar! You would’t want to have him and his smelly cigar in your house would you?”

    • Dont Say FLA

      March 4, 2024 at 8:13 pm

      Given a choice between Castro and his smell cigar versus Trump and his smelly adult diaper, I choose Castro and the cigar.

  • Joe

    March 4, 2024 at 12:09 pm

    These RepubliQans are all liars, morons, and cowards.

Comments are closed.


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