Fireworks

Fireworks

My opponent has made a series of social media posts demanding Brevard’s local municipalities put on a traditional 4th of July celebration. He’s reminded everyone almost daily that he is offering to use $20,000 to pay for it. He has even taken the liberty to name the event after himself. 

Today is Flag Day the day which commemorates the adoption of the first flag of the United States on June 14, 1777 by resolution of the Second Continental Congress. 

Various interpretations of our flag’s symbolism have been presented over the years, my favorite being that made by President Ronald Reagan in 1986.  “The colors of our flag signify the qualities of the human spirit we Americans cherish. Red for courage and readiness to sacrifice; white for pure intentions and high ideals; and blue for vigilance and justice.”

The flag also evokes sentiments about everything that it means to be American:  federalism, integrity, respect for others, collaboration, unity and dignity.

Federalism or the distribution of power from the national government down to the states is a hallmark of our American system.  In Florida, we also have home rule whereby power is transferred from the state down to the local or municipal level for all local decision making.

Unfortunately, there is always a tension in this system with those at higher levels of government always wanting to grab the power and authority for decision-making, an effort I oppose.

Disrespect is one of the key attributes that I have seen in the incumbent’s character.  I have observed disrespect for others across the board in all his dealings but, in particular, the incumbent is repeatedly disrespectful when dealing with local government.  Why, we must ask ourselves, is it that he cannot respect the local governments’ decisions to not have the fireworks celebrations?  

Government’s #1 job is to provide safety. If the local governments have decided not to hold fireworks celebrations due to concerns over Covid19, their decisions should be respected.   Financial concerns are always key in local decision making and may well have played a role as well.

Local officials were elected to make these tough decisions.   I respect the decisions of our local leaders and am committed to putting an end to the trend of attacking them from the District 53 Representative’s office.

In addition, it seems to me that another of the incumbent’s main passions is his need for headlines and of gaining notoriety.  As such, I believe he is attacking local elected officials for his own personal gain, frankly, trying to turn this national holiday into a campaign event. 

See this for what it is.  See the truth.  And then let’s respect our local elected officials and their decision making on the 2020 fireworks celebrations.

Social Media Policies – I Will Not Suppress Your Freedom of Speech

Social Media Policies – I Will Not Suppress Your Freedom of Speech

(1) No one can be blocked from my campaign Facebook, Twitter, or any social media because of the opinions they hold. 

•. The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in Davidson v. Randall ruled on January 7, 2019 that a public official’s Facebook is a “public forum”. As such, given and the fact that one the core purposes of our First Amendment is to hold our government accountable by allowing constituents their unfettered, free, open rights to communicate with their elected officials and for their views to be heard, no one can be blocked from my Facebook because of the opinions they hold.

• The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York decided on May 23, 2018 in Knight First Amendment Institute v. Trump that elected officials’ Twitter accounts are public forums as well. Any elected official who blocks access to constituents’ Twitter accounts violates their First Amendment Rights.

(2) I will blacklist (or block) anyone from my Facebook who spams or floods the page.
• There have been no legal decisions on spamming or flooding to date. Nevertheless, it is clear to me that a spammer’s or flooder’s malicious choice to flood the page violates everyone else’s right to free speech. 

• Spamming or flooding is disrespectful, waste everyone’s time and blocks the ability for every other District 53 constituent to have unfettered, free, open rights to communicate. This must always be stopped.

• However, in my opinion, it would be improper to permanently block a spammer/flooder as that would violate the individual’s rights to free speech. 

• Instead, anytime a person is blacklisted, he or she will be blacklisted for 30 days. Should that person wish to return to the page, he or she may request the right to return as long as he or she is willing to abide by our no spamming/no flooding rules. This request should be in writing and mailed to Friends of Marcie Adkins, PO Box 50053, Malabar, FL. 32950. 

• The blacklisted individual will be allowed to return to the public forum as long as he or she stops spamming or flooding, otherwise the person will be blacklisted again and the process will repeat itself.

(3) I request civility and globally denounce all cursing or hate speech of any kind. However, we must also recognize that Americans all have the right to speak in different ways and we enshrine and protect all individuals’ rights to free speech in our public forum. 

(4) No posts can be deleted.

• The First Amendment Foundation, an organization established to protect and advance all Floridian’s constitutional right to open government, has advised me that any public material posted to my Facebook or any other social media page, whether it be on my personal page or my official page, may not be deleted. 

• No comments may be deleted because all public discussion in a public forum is a public record and is therefore subject to disclosure and retention requirements.

• Deleting a post is deleting a public record which is illegal.

• Since it is illegal for me to remove posts, if you object to any posts on hate-speech grounds, you are responsible to complain to Facebook yourself.

(5) I may not discuss legislative business with other members of the Florida House of Representatives on social media.

• The reasoning for this prohibition is Florida’s Government in the Sunshine Law (F.S. 286.011) which protects the citizenry’s right of access to governmental proceedings. 

• Any gathering (or talk on social media) of 2 or more members of the House of Representatives must be open to the public, given advance notice of and minutes of the meetings must be taken and recorded.

• Therefore, if I was to discuss public policy with other members of the Florida House of Representatives on social media, I would be violating Florida’s Sunshine Law.

*****

NOTES:  
(1) These policies do not apply to me yet as I have not yet been elected. However, they DO apply to the incumbent who is notorious for violating these laws. 

As such, I have decided to set myself apart and to prepare myself for properly following the law when I AM elected to serve you. Therefore, these policies will be invoked immediately, as of 6:50 am, 5/14/2020.

(2) I have previously posted that we would return the anti-gay and anti-semitic posts to Facebook that we removed after we denounced them last Thursday, 5-7-2020. However, we are unable to do so for some computer-Facebook reason.