The state of Florida continues to have significant issues with political corruption. In Duval County, we have a total of four politicians either recently convicted or currently under investigation for misappropriation of funds including filing false tax returns, conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. Each of these politicians are African-American and Democrat. Not only does this blemish the Florida Democratic Party but it’s also does a disservice to a black community which remains in dire straits.
Our children remain our future. However, the quality of life for Duval County’s black children are relatively poor. Black children represent a much larger percentage of poor children than their white and Hispanic peers. Black children make up the largest share of all poor kids living with a single mother and black children receive a disproportionate share of disciplinary referrals at school. Further, black youth make up most of the juvenile arrests, secure detention and those whose cases are transferred to an adult court. Given these poor statistics, we simply cannot afford politicians who utilize their office for illegitimate private gains. We must hold all our politicians accountable, whether we like them or not by first, having knowledge of the major issues our vulnerable communities face, know exactly what our elected official have done to directly address these issues and improve outcomes.
The cost of corruption
When people lose confidence in politicians they are less likely to vote or stay engaged in politics. Additionally, honest, compassionate, principled individuals will be more reluctant to apply for public office if they percieve they too will need to be involved in corruption in order to obtain and maintain their position. As a result, the vicious cycle of corruption continues because nobody’s paying attention thus political corruption goes unchallenged.
Prevention and eradication of political corruption should be a priority for every American. We all lose and will continue to lose if we don’t.