But we can proudly proclaim to be first in a situation recognized nationally.
We have had more of our citizens criminally charged for participating in the insurrection at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 than any other state.
And I imagine for every person so charged, there are dozens or perhaps hundreds or maybe even thousands more locals who support what was done that day.
Makes me proud to live here.
And it’s a comfort to know how many such right-wing crazies are members of our police departments. They’re joining to obtain experience they can use to attack our democracy. In fact, even some of those arrested are in these organizations or local fire departments. Knowing such individuals might be the responders when we need assistance has to be reassuring. Especially if we’re not a white male.
Now I wouldn’t want you to think this is the only area where Florida ranks first and makes national headlines. We are enjoying a higher rate of Covid infections than any other state. We actually are in a tight race with Texas for this honor. Every day I check the rankings, worrying we will lose this special distinction.
I am encouraged by our governor who refuses to insist on measures that would mitigate the problem, such as requiring masks in schools or proofs of vaccination by businesses. I think under his inspired leadership we can be ensured our top place in the nation will endure.
Yet another area where we are doing all in our power to be number one is gun ownership. Unfortunately, we rank only third at the current time in number of guns per 1000 residents. This is unsettling to our leaders and they promise new laws to ease requirements for gun ownership. Maybe even a campus carry bill!
Nevertheless, it will be a tough challenge to move up. Florida currently brags that, for every 1000 of our population, there are 343 guns. A hefty number but it puts us behind both California and Texas. The good news is we have an excellent opportunity to move into second place because California’s number is “only” 344. I’m confident we can surpass that. Texas, though, is another matter with 588 guns per 1000 people. That sounds like a formidable challenge, but I have complete faith in our Republican leaders to fight hard to gain first spot.
A final area where we come out on top is in the race for the least amount of per-person spending for mental health services, about $36 per person. If you include Puerto Rico, though, we fall to second place behind the territory’s $20.
I’m sure there are many other areas where we can take pride in our high ranking.
What a joy it is to live in Floriduh.