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Friday, June 21
The Indiana Daily Student


New Florida

Florida is at it again.

The City of South Miami has passed a resolution to secede from the northern half of Florida and create a new state.

City officials passed the motion in response to concerns that the state government in Tallahassee is not taking the issue of rising sea levels in the southern region seriously.

The city’s call to consider dividing a state due to environmental concerns is both laughable and concerning.

First, other states in the Union are grappling with issues much greater than climate change and have not resorted to the extreme measures the City of South Miami has.

Ferguson, Mo., is still in upheaval about the death of Michael Brown, an unarmed, black teenager who was shot and killed by a white police offer.

Since his death, protesters have taken to the streets for 70 nights in a row.

During the course of the protests, a series of questionable behavior unfolded on the national stage.

Journalists were arrested to prevent them from covering the riots.

Police, clad in military-grade equipment, rode in armored vehicles through the city streets, spraying tear gas and pointing their weapons at unarmed people.

The police officer, Darren Wilson, has yet to be charged for the death of the minor.

Despite the blatant infringements upon the protesters’ civil rights and the racially charged, wrongful death of a teenager at the hands of law enforcement, Ferguson has not threatened to divide the state in two. In comparison, environmental concerns should not demand extreme ?action.

Unfortunately, the lunacy of the City of South Miami’s resolution is not uncommon in American politics today.

The polarization exhibited by policymakers on the national level has essentially led to a government shutdown. Republicans have rallied to impeach President Obama because of his unconstitutional behavior, behavior the political right has yet to prove through concrete examples.

Although the move to secede is dramatic, the lengths to which the City of South Miami is willing to go to attract attention is a reflection of a concerning disconnect between state, municipal and federal levels of Floridian government.

Voters in Florida should take advantage of midterm elections to scrutinize their policymakers and learn what they have been doing for their constituency.

While the state government appears to be at fault for the City of South Miami’s resolution, municipal officials may have written the document as a political move to stay in office.

Regardless of the motive, Floridians must take care to address the extremism within its halls of government.

But, so too, should the American public be vigilant in holding policymakers accountable for their actions, however laughable they may be.

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