July 23, 2021 7:00 am

Gov. Ron DeSantis flew to Texas Saturday (July 17, 2021) to discuss border security, along with Texas Gov. Greg Abbott. Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody, Florida Senate President Wilton Simpson and others attended the discussion in Texas. Credit: Screenshot, KXAN News.

Thank God our governor doesn’t listen to these quote-unquote experts trying to impose their over-educated, evidence-based, warped world view on decent, horoscope-reading, lucky socks-wearing, lottery ticket-buying, chicken entrails-reading Floridians.

We’re not dumb, you know.

Take the so-called global pandemic. The quote-unquote data show that Florida’s COVID-19 numbers are up 200 percent over the last two weeks. One in five new cases nationwide blossom right here. Plus, we have the quote-unquote fourth highest rate of hospitalizations in the nation.

But who are you going to believe: a gaggle of MDs at the CDC or the guy who takes no stock in these quote-unquote doctors, quote-unquote statisticians, and other Deep State flunkies conspiring to trick free-thinking Floridians into getting vaccinated?

In the middle of all this hissy fit-pitching from the quote-unquote medical community, what does Ron DeSantis do? He goes to Texas.

The governor has generously dispatched 50 fine law enforcement officers to the border with Mexico. Our Texan friends have recently been shaken by vicious allegations that John Wayne did not, in fact, win the Alamo, and needed help turning back the brown hordes.

“Of the individuals our law enforcement have apprehended at the border,” said Gov. DeSantis, “more than 70 percent said they ultimately wanted to go to Florida.”

Obviously, because everyone wants to come to Florida. All of Texas probably wants to come to Florida — we’ve got Cuban sandwiches! But we can’t allow it: They would pick our fruit, mow our lawns, bus our tables, and probably insist on speaking quote-unquote Spanish.

Certain quote-unquote journalists rudely wondered if that 70 percent number was accurate, while others suggested the governor was trying to change the subject. Those Debbie Downers simply won’t stop bringing up the infection surge and the quote-unquote fact that not even 50 percent of the state is fully vaccinated, and hey, can’t he do something more to encourage people to do what’s best for them and the rest of the quote-unquote planet and get the damned jab?

Of course, the governor soon demonstrated his command of the situation, informing us that all viruses go wild in the summer: “It’s a seasonal virus,” says DeSantis, “and this is the seasonal pattern it follows in the Sun Belt states.”

It’s not that the aforementioned Sun Belt states — your Alabamas, your Texases, your Mississippis, your Arizonas — are run by science-denying Trumpists who haven’t exactly championed vaccines for their citizens, it’s just that the ’rona loves to hang poolside.

Sure, quote-unquote virologists insist the Delta variant ’rona is not actually “seasonal,” but you can’t trust those guys: They hang out in labs and hospitals and never go on “Fox and Friends.”

Most of them also want you to go back to wearing masks, which Gov. DeSantis’s pal Scott Atlas says don’t even work.

He should know: He’s a radiologist.

As the governor — the most articulate, grammatically-immaculate, self-aware person ever to hold the office — says, “I’m sorry, there’s been a lot of misinformation and a lot of bad advice that’s been given by some of these experts over the last year. These people saw all that; they remember all this stuff. So, I would say, have a little humility when you’re trying to carry that message. You know, understand that there’s some people that may have qualms.”

Qualms is right! Also trepidations, confusions, anxieties, and paranoid delusions. Some of these quote-unquote experts  said we shouldn’t mainline hydroxychloroquine, which the president of the United States himself recommended!

Dr. Anthony Fauci, a guy the fake news calls a quote-unquote science superstar, keeps harshing everybody’s mellow trying to scare us about the big, bad Delta variant. And he flat refused to even try the president’s innovative ideas about ingesting Lysol or sticking a bright light up your butt.

Yeah, Fauci’s head of the quote-unquote National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases or whatever, but he’s what Scott Atlas (who’s a doctor too, you know) calls “a political animal.”

Totally unlike our governor, who’s only selling those cute “Don’t Fauci My Florida” T-shirts and “How the hell am I going to be able to drink a beer with a mask on?” koozies to cheer us all up.

We need a little levity in these dark days of America-dissing wokeness, don’t we?

Y’all, the real quote-unquote point here is that just because you’ve studied something for decades and gotten awards and grants and stuff doesn’t mean that you know more about it than the rest of us.

This is America. It’s a fact that Moses rode a Triceratops to Sunday School, and that South Florida only floods because somebody keeps throwing rocks into the Atlantic, making the water level rise (to pick a couple of really obvious points). You can’t tell me that whatever I think is true isn’t as good as whatever the nerds at MIT or NOAA say.

Gov. Ron DeSantis has managed to rise above his quote-unquote Ivy League schooling and understands that Floridians don’t need to hear anything that might confuse us — especially if we’re white.

This goes double for schools and colleges. Our students can learn that a long time ago there was slavery and yes, picking cotton 16 hours a day, getting raped, and sometimes beaten nearly to death wasn’t super fun.

Still, we should teach both sides. Think of it: From 1619 to 1865, black folks in America had full employment!

No matter what, we’re so fortunate our state leaders are bold enough to ignore the quote-unquote scientists, the quote-unquote clinicians, and the quote-unquote educational professionals. Think about it, y’all.

But not too hard.

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Diane Roberts
Diane Roberts

Diane Roberts is an 8th-generation Floridian, born and bred in Tallahassee, which probably explains her unhealthy fascination with Florida politics. Educated at Florida State University and Oxford University in England, she has been writing for newspapers since 1983, when she began producing columns on the legislature for the Florida Flambeau. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, the Times of London, the Guardian, the Washington Post, the Oxford American, and Flamingo. She has been a member of the Editorial Board of the St. Petersburg Times–back when that was the Tampa Bay Times’s name–and a long-time columnist for the paper in both its iterations. She was a commentator on NPR for 22 years and continues to contribute radio essays and opinion pieces to the BBC. Roberts is also the author of four books, most recently Dream State, an historical memoir of her Florida family, and Tribal: College Football and the Secret Heart of America. She lives in Tallahassee, except for the times she runs off to Great Britain, desperate for a different government to satirize.

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