Author

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.

COMMENTARY

Hey, Olympic Committee! Why don’t y’all come on down to Florida? July is lovely here!

By: - February 1, 2021

Dear International Olympic Committee: Allow me to introduce myself, Your Gold Medal Excellencies: Jimmy — Jimmy Patronis — Chief Financial Officer of the great sunshine state of Florida. So, I hear Japan’s so scared of the Wuhan virus they want to ditch this summer’s Olympic Games. Pathetic. But never fear: As I so boldly stated […]

COMMENTARY

‘The 1776 Report’ feeds the Republican Party’s politics of delusion

By: - January 25, 2021

Slavery in America was not America’s fault. The rich white colonial gents who made their money from enslaving Africans, importing them, selling them, and forcing them to work on the plantations didn’t really mean to do it. But all the rich white gents in the French and English colonies were doing it, too. And what […]

COMMENTARY

Entitled followers of the new Lost Cause showed their face during Capitol attack

By: - January 11, 2021

When we elected Barack Obama president in 2008, I hoped maybe our long civil war — the one in which Appomattox was merely a pause — might be over at last. The United States would finally become what we like to claim we are: a society dedicated to tolerance, equal opportunity, and equal justice under […]

COMMENTARY

In the twilight of the Trumps, how much of America remains?

By: - December 28, 2020

When Donald Trump got himself elected president, I decided to look on the bright side, telling myself that our democratic structures — the legislative branch, the courts, the vote, the Constitution — would save us. The day after the election I wrote, “The United States has elected its own Silvio Berlusconi, a vain, vulgar, racist […]

COMMENTARY

FL’s political forecast: Stormy with a chance of idiocy

By: - December 14, 2020

Along with a jump in coronavirus infections, Florida is suffering a predictible spike in its already sky-high rate of self-defeating idiocy. Witness the newest immigrants to the Sunshine State, the Trump Crime Family: Individual 1, sulking, nursing his narcissistic wounds, says he plans to flounce down to Mar-a-Lago on Joe Biden’s Inauguration Day and hold […]

COMMENTARY

For 70 million real Americans, Donald Trump is the new ‘Lost Cause’

By: - November 30, 2020

Can I get a Rebel Yell? No matter what the libtards say, Marse Donald is president of these United States, and he ain’t going nowhere. Until Jan. 20th, that is, but only because he wants to — not because the Fake News, the Deep State, and the Coastal Elites say he has to. We all […]

COMMENTARY

Sorry, but our governor is acting as crazy as a Raid-sprayed roach

By: - November 18, 2020

Gov. Ron DeSantis is clearly suffering some kind of breakdown, poor fellow. How else can you explain his bizarre behavior? If it’s not an emotional collapse then the only other possibility is that he is a sociopath who doesn’t give a good goddamn about the people of Florida. And that couldn’t possibly be the case, […]

COMMENTARY

Donald Trump got beat; we have saved our democracy

By: - November 9, 2020

Donald Trump is a loser. He lost. Got beat. Everyone knows it except him, his venomous offspring, and his circle of true-believing flatterers, toadies, and suck-ups whining about “voter fraud” and trotting off to Fox to air their grievances. Leading the cry-baby brigade, former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi claims there were “fake ballots that […]

COMMENTARY

At best, Florida has a vexed relationship with democracy

By: - October 30, 2020

People write whole entire books on what’s wrong with this state — I know, I’m one of them. But none of us has ever definitively nailed down what strange brain-warping event, what soul-degenerating disease, turned Juan Ponce de Leon’s Land of Flowers and William Bartram’s “glorious apartment in the boundless palace of the sovereign creator” […]

COMMENTARY

Dissed by the ‘Kay-Dee Ladies,’ Amy Coney Barrett nevertheless seems headed for the U.S. Supreme Court

By: - October 23, 2020

Move over, Miss Ann; back off, Becky; Karen take a hike: Barring a convenient asteroid strike on South Bend, Amy Coney Barrett is about to become a member of the nation’s highest court. And if you’re partial to little features of American life such as the separation of church and state, reproductive freedom, clean air […]

COMMENTARY

When it comes to COVID-19, Republicans don’t need no stinkin’ science. They invent their own

By: - October 12, 2020

POTUS tested positive for COVID-19, but pretended he could beat it into submission with a show of maskless machismo and spluttering non sequiturs. FLOTUS tested positive too, and is taking time off from her private war on Christmas to quarantine in the East Wing while a leaked FEMA memo says nearly three dozen Trump staffers, […]

COMMENTARY

The GOP has suffered from a pathological fear of Black folks enjoying the full rights of citizens

By: - September 28, 2020

Let’s talk about Democracy. It’s as endangered as the Florida Panther. Gov. Ron DeSantis could have granted a full pardon to the former felon who’s devoted his life to helping other former felons regain the franchise, but he wouldn’t, instead saying he’d “take it under advisement.” Desmond Meade, a former drug user who was dishonorably […]