IL Gov. blasts DeSantis and other 'demagogues who are pushing censorship'

IL Gov. blasts DeSantis and other 'demagogues who are pushing censorship'
Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzer, Image via Twitter

Illinois Democratic Governor J.B. Pritzker called out "demagogues who are pushing censorship" during his annual state of the state address this week, likely referring to Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis' controversial ploy to remove African American studies from high school and college classrooms across the country, Politico reports.

This comes after the governor already wrote to the College Board denouncing DeSantis' attempt to amend the organization's African American studies Advanced Placement courses.

Per WBEZ Chicago, the focus of Pritzker's address was his proposed nearly $50 billion state budget, which would primarily allocate funds towards "everything from early childhood initiatives to education to reproductive health care."

READ MORE: Ron DeSantis's huge step toward academic control

The governor dedicated a portion of his address to DeSantis' attack on education, calling it "a virulent strain of nationalism plaguing our nation." Politico notes although Pritzker did not specifically name DeSantis, his aim was clear.

“This afternoon, I’ve laid out a budget agenda that does everything possible to invest in the education of our children," he said. "Yet it’s all meaningless if we become a nation that bans books from school libraries about racism suffered by Roberto Clemente and Hank Aaron, and tells kids they can’t talk about being gay. It signals to Black and brown people and Asian Americans and Jews and Muslims that our authentic stories can’t be told."

Politico notes that particular part of his speech yielded applause from the governor's Democratic colleagues, while Illinois GOP officials remained quiet.

Referring to his children, who are both at the collegiate level, Pritzker continued, "I don’t want them to be lied to. I want them to learn our true history, warts and all."

READ MORE: 'This bill is indefensible': DeSantis’ measure to fly 'migrants from state to state' approved

The governor also cited the influences of 16th U.S. President Abraham Lincoln, as well as Holocaust survivor and Nobel Laureate Ellie Wiesel, saying, "This is the Land of Lincoln. We have a responsibility to that legacy."

Honoring Wiesel, he said, "We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented."

Criticizing the right wing's history of admonishing the reality of history, the governor emphasized, "This has been done in the past, and it doesn’t stop with just snuffing out ideas," the governor said during his recent live Illinois General Assembly joint session address. "It’s an ideological battle by the right wing, hiding behind a claim that they would protect our children — but whose real intention is to marginalize people and ideas they don’t like."

Politico's full report is available at this link. WBEZ Chicago's is here.

READ MORE: Trump could end DeSantis' presidential hopes with a series of surprising attacks: analyst

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal
{{ }}
@2022 - AlterNet Media Inc. All Rights Reserved. - "Poynter" fonts provided by