A legal and political firestorm ignites as Florida again lures migrants in Texas onto planes


This week, a second group of migrants from Texas have been forced to search for resources after allegedly being offered transportation by the Florida government. Asylum seekers at the border who were told they would be flown to Delaware were instead held at a San Antonio motel for days. Then they were told that their flight was cancelled Miami Herald reported on Wednesday.

This follows last week’s potentially illegal stunt that left 50 migrants stranded in Martha’s Vineyard. Governor DeSantis took advantage of this flight even though the migrants were crossing the border into another state.

As of last week, DeSantis has been working to explain the legal grounds that allow him to move migrants coming to Texas across the country. He has repeatedly indicated that the action is valid because Florida is the final destination for many migrants.

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This week, the Martha’s Vineyard migrants filed a federal lawsuit against the governor. At the same time, the House Homeland Security Committee is asking both the Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security to open investigations into the flights.

We spoke about the migrant flights Nick Nehamas, investigative reporter at Miami Herald, and Danny Rivero, reporter/host of the South Florida Roundup at WLRN.

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A new report by freedom of speech organization PEN America also ranks Florida among the top states for banned books. According to the report “Banned in the USA, the Growing Movement to Censor Books in Schools,” more books are being banned in more school districts in more states.

In Florida, 21 school districts have book bans on 566 books.

The majority of banned books contain subjects or characters affecting the LGBTQ community and people of color.

According to PEN, the move to challenge or remove books from schools has grown into a full-fledged social and political movement. At least 50 groups are behind the book ban push, and they’re sharing lists of books to be banned and employing similar tactics — like school board meeting swarms.

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The damage caused by book bans is widespread, according to the report. It interferes with intellectual freedom, limits the professional autonomy of teachers and librarians, and affects the well-being of students affected by the ban.

Our guest: Summer Lopez, Chief Program Officer for Free Speech at PEN America.

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