Do childish tactics weaken politicians' credibility?
Late on January 4, Florida's Agriculture Commissioner and Democrat candidate for the position of Governor - Nikki Fried - took to Twitter to issue what some would describe as a childish and inflammatory critique of Governor Ron DeSantis.
In the attack, she described him as doing everything he can to become a dictator:
She directed another juvenile insult towards the governor in the same tweet, presumably in an effort to make her opinions clear.
Meanwhile, earlier that same day a community activist was arrested prior to a DeSantis press conference - bringing an air of dictatorial handling of peaceful citizens to the event.
Police arrested founder of the Northside Coalition, Ben Frazier who had attended the event and was hopeful of being able to meet the Governor and put some questions to him.
Political opposition played out on social media
In late December, Nikki Fried was one of many Democrats who questioned the Governors whereabouts at a time when the latest pandemic wave was sweeping across Florida. Having declared him MIA, Fried was scathing about whether his presence might actually make a difference:
“I don’t know where he is, but quite honest, even if he was here, he wouldn’t be doing anything anyhow, and we know that.”
While his absence was later explained away as being due to accompanying his wife Casey to chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer. But it would appear from her latest assault on Twitter that Fried hasn't been put off from further personal attacks against the Governor.
Republicans can be as bad too
Unfortunately for citizens who might hope for civilized and intelligent political discourse, it seems that mudslinging and points-scoring on social media is pretty much the norm in politics these days.
Many high profile figures in the Republican party such as Georgia representative Marjorie Taylor-Greene have carried on where Donald Trump left off (before he was de-platformed by most major platforms).
She issued a statement on the Telegram social media platform, describing how Twitter are aiding a "communist revolution" and on January 2 was reported to have been permanently banned from the platform permanently for repeated tweeting of misinformation.
Gov. DeSantis too is no stranger to making inflammatory statements against political opponents online or in speeches. In November, he made a tongue-in-cheek reference to the "Brandon Administration" and then led chants of 'Let's Go Brandon' - in a nod to the unofficial and derogatory chant of various Republicans.
It seems a shame that politicians as nominated representatives of the public on both sides of the political aisle, seem unable or unwilling to keep discourse civil and focused on the issues, but perhaps that's just a sign of the times.
Do you feel like Governor DeSantis is trying to establish himself as a dictator over Florida? Would you like to see Nikki Fried as Governor of Florida? Let me know in the comments section below.