Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida pushed back at a heckler during a Friday event in South Carolina where he defended parental rights legislation.
During his speech, one member of the audience shouted, “The right to health care, to their kid’s health care, you’re a f—— fascist!”
“We say gay!” the heckler added.
“We’re not going to let you impose an agenda on our kids, we’re going to stand up for our kids,” DeSantis retorted.
“We’re gonna make sure to do it right. That’s what we’re gonna do!” he continued.
“Those people like that in Florida are the people we beat every single day on policy,” DeSantis added. “We do not let them win. We win all these battles. We’re not letting them indoctrinate our kids, not on our watch.”
The Florida governor and 2024 presidential candidate continued to discuss the state’s parental rights policy.
“Parents have a fundamental right to direct the education and upbringing of their children,” DeSantis said. “The school systems are important, but they’re there to support the community.”
“They’re not there to supersede the rights of parents and what they think is appropriate, and so we’ve enacted protections for parents such as curriculum transparency, so that they have a right to know what books are being used and what curriculum is being taught to their kids,” DeSantis continued.
“Unfortunately, there’s bad stuff that’s getting into the schools,” DeSantis added. “There’s pornography that’s getting in the schools, so the parents of had to blow the whistle in Florida.”
Last month, DeSantis announced his campaign for president. One of the main topics his campaign focuses on is parental rights. Other GOP candidates in the 2024 presidential primary include former President Donald Trump, former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley, businessman Vivek Ramaswamy, South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott and former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson.
DeSantis, who announced his candidacy for president May 24, signed legislation protecting parental rights in Florida in March 2022 which led to a feud with Disney over the entertainment conglomerate’s opposition to the law.
Following the passage of the bill, Florida schools pulled multiple books on the grounds of having explicit content, including “Gender Queer,” “Let’s Talk About It” and “It’s Perfectly Normal.”
DeSantis also opposed an Advanced Placement course that reportedly contained elements of Critical Race Theory, which holds that America is fundamentally racist, teaches people to view every social interaction and person in terms of race and which seeks to hold groups of people accountable for the actions of their ancestors, and so-called queer theory.