Teachers in this state could soon be armed—and this lawmaker is fighting to protect Black children from the proven disciplinary bias that could soon turn lethal.
Florida is a signature away from arming its teachers despite this lawmakers best efforts.
FL State Rep. Shevrin Jones proposed an amendment that would require armed teachers undergo implicit bias training, helping teachers to acknowledge their preconceived prejudices. A GOP colleague said Jones was implying that teachers are racist.
Jones: ‘There’s a reality that some of us have, that some of you on the front row can care less about. Because not one time, not once, did I say anyone in this House was a racist. Not one time. So let me quote myself on that.’ Jones also pushed to bar teachers from using Florida’s ‘stand your ground’ law to justify shooting a student.
Jones:’ The reality is, I filed this amendment dealing with stand your ground because it’s a reality for some of us when we go back into our districts.
You can look at me crazy. You can say whatever you want to say, but a reality that many of us go back home to with a teacher who has a gun in her hand.
We’re talking about Black boys and girls. That’s who I filed this amendment for. Don’t call me a racist. I’m the one who’s fighting for a district, for the people I represent. I never said I was a racist. Y’all never see me act like this before but don’t dare call me a racist, because it never came out of my mouth.
I asked for implicit bias training because we’re talking about Black boys and girls who are getting murdered by police officers. There’s bad police officers and there are bad teachers. I never called them a racist but I am giving you reality!’
Many police departments undergo implicit bias training to learn more about inherent biases that could play into decision making.
Jones: ‘I talk about my nephews often because that’s a reality I go home to. I don’t have children. And to get called and say that that came out of my mouth. It’s insulting. I filed this amendment because students go to school on a daily basis, and yes, you might have some good teachers, but damn, you’ve got some bad ones too. And the reason I filed this is because it’s a protection to ensure that individuals who might not look at me like they look at you, who might not look at that boy who has dreads in this hair, and might be intimidated by him. I say this speech for him. Every last one of you in this chamber, I show love to you because I love you. I do! But I fight for the people I fight for. Please, whatever you do, I don’t care what you do on that board. Vote down the amendment for all I care, but don’t insult me for fighting for the people I serve.’
Both of Jones’ amendments were voted down.