Florida Government, Unlike New York, Preserves Government’s True Purpose: To Secure Our Rights

Police officers saluting over fallen officer

Thousands of law enforcement officers who gathered last week in solidarity to mourn two of New York’s finest heard the words of a grieving widow, Dominique Luzuriaga Rivera, directed to her husband, brutally slain New York City Detective Jason Rivera, at his funeral.

“Seeing you in a hospital bed wrapped up in sheets,” she said, “not hearing you when I was talking to you, broke me.”

But that tragic reality broke more than Dominique Luzuriaga Rivera; it broke the social contract we have with our government. As she stated: “The system continues to fail us. We are not safe anymore, not even the members of the service.”

The reason: Those leftist democrats and criminal-coddling elites have lost touch with the purpose of government, as a protector of individual rights.

Many of us can recite the founders’ stirring expression of that purpose by heart: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

But many also miss the affirmation that follows: “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed…” (Emphasis added.)

Citizens Consent To Government

 

That concept — that citizens consent to cede power to government for the limited purpose of protecting their God-given rights — in turn was derived from the writings of John Locke, the English political theorist and advocate who insisted that we are “by nature, all free, equal, and independent” and that “no one can be put out of this estate, and subjected to the political power of another, without his own consent.”

To Locke, freedom is grounded in principles of natural law that are echoed in the Declaration, specifically that “being all equal and independent, no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty, or possessions…” Therefore, the goal of consent to government is “not to abolish or restrain, but to preserve and enlarge freedom. For in all the states of created beings capable of law, where there is no law” — i.e., New York, LA or San Francisco — “there is no freedom.

In other words, without the maintenance of law and order — and respect for those who defend us all, like Rivera and his murdered partner, Wilbert Mora — there can be no protection of our unalienable rights. The left seems unwilling or unable to protect those who serve to protect us all.

But the very idea behind Democratic and elitist efforts to “defund” police forces, and their toleration — if not even encouragement of — rampant criminality is used to advance their very different notion of government’s purpose, not to protect rights but the polar opposite: to pursue redistribution of wealth, status and power to favored constituencies.

 

Policies Shifted Power

 

Their lenient policies on crime have resulted in the wholesale shift of power and authority from brave, virtuous guardians of our freedom to smash-and-grab thugs looting upscale retail locations; flash mobs driving Walgreens and CVS out of business in San Francisco; urban terrorists who riot, assault and burn down federal buildings and police precincts or drive cars into crowds of parade-watchers; and multiple-convicted losers like the murderer of Rivera and Mora.

Locke and the founders of this great nation would be horrified by the leftist policies — but proud of the commitment to protecting unalienable rights and freedoms displayed here in Florida. In his State of the State address, Gov. Ron DeSantis pledged, “We will not allow law enforcement to be defunded, bail to be eliminated, criminals to be prematurely released from prison or prosecutors to ignore the law.”

And in releasing his aptly-named “Freedom First Budget,” our chief executive noted that it “support(s) first responders … who protect our freedom” through salary increases, signing bonuses, free exams and training expenses for law enforcement officers relocating to the Sunshine State, and a Law Enforcement Academy scholarship. 

Meanwhile, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez has made bucking the defunding trend a linchpin of his strategy to make his city “The Capital of Capital,” boasting, “We have the most police officers we’ve ever had, which has allowed us to decrease crime by 25%” and achieve “the lowest homicide rate since 1954.”

The governor’s strong showing in polls and Suarez’s recent re-election with nearly 80% of the vote underscore the fact that Floridians will never consent to a San Francisco- or New York-style shredding of the social contract that protects lives, property and individual rights. We will not let the system fail us here in Florida