Some days it seems that it’s not only the much-discussed transgender crowd who’ve opted to have their balls removed. We are surrounded by politicians who should be leading, inspiring and – yes – protecting; but instead prefer to waft about, blowing on whichever wind appears most popular on any given day.
In the UK, Rishi Sunak and Sir Keir Starmer repeatedly talk about keeping British people safe (from crime, poverty and - of course – the weather!) but I suspect they’d run for the Shires if faced with any genuine danger, trampling over women and children in the process. In the wake of wokeness, we’re left with wimps.
And then there’s potential US Republican Presidential candidate Governor Ron DeSantis.
Luckily I’m sitting down, as I go a bit weak at the knees over this father of three. You see, the sunshine State of Florida was an international outlier during the Covid years under the unwavering guidance of ex-soldier RDS.
Ron DeSantis refused to introduce the same Covid rules as other US states
Whilst Boris Johnson ran his fingers through his hair, looking nervous, stepping from foot to foot at the lectern and deferring to the Chief Medical officers for the "tough" decisions, Ron gripped the podium with both hands looked down the lens and said that nobody in his State was going to be forced to do anything against their will: mask-up, take an injection, socially distance or keep their kids locked up.
I swooned, dabbed my moistening brow and did what every modern day damsel does with a knight in her sights: signed up to his mailing list.
By September 2020, while we were being treated like children, legally prevented from deciding our own level of personal risk, Floridians were empowered with genuine facts about infection fatality rates and given the freedom to make their own decisions – in fact, De Santis enacted laws to prosecute any business who tried to impose restrictions on customers.
Despite Covid-19 posing a far greater risk to the elderly than the young, and Florida having the fifth oldest median age in the USA, they have only the 12th highest death rate across the nation. In other words, De Santis sought alternative, impartial scientific opinion, trusted his instincts, had the courage of his convictions and led from the front.
In the face of unprecedented pressure from pharmaceutical companies, President Trump (and later Biden) plus NGOs such as The World Health Organization and The World Economic Forum, Ron slapped his big hands on the desk and said, “No. I will not comply.”
On all the big issues: crime, health, education, identity politics, he draws inspiration from an outdated concept called "common sense" and isn’t afraid of appearing "old-fashioned".
He signed legislation to protect Floridians against a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) which he explained may sound "benevolent" but is in fact a "massive transfer of power from consumers to a central authority".
When our own Prime Minister talks about CBDCs (and he does this only rarely because he is scared of its inherent controversy and the backlash it would evoke) he appears libidinous and giddy, like a teenager whose parents are buying him a new Play-station.
Ironically, through his efforts not to abuse the power bestowed as State Governor, De Santis makes his citizens feel safe. He executes a ‘tough love’ approach, consistently behaving with the best interests of Floridians at heart – especially its children.
“If you can’t stand up for children,” he said of other weak politicians, “what good are you?”
It brought to mind Johnson, Hancock and Sunak deciding to keep schools closed because Nicola Sturgeon had done so and they didn’t want to appear weak. Pathetic.
But Ron doesn’t just talk the talk. This year he offered a "Back to School Sales Tax holiday" so that parents could equip their children for the new term. There are few things more attractive in a man than a willingness to help time and cash-strapped mums look after their kids. Empty words empathising with the challenge of parenting just wind us up. But make the back-to-school shop more bearable and you actually affect our day. I can’t remember the last time that I felt a politician made my day easier rather than even more trying.
While our leaders get hot under the collar about the thrill of ‘ESG – Environmental and Social Governance’ obligations imposed on businesses so that they ‘look good’ and display an overt social conscience, De Santis pithily announced: “We’ve kneecapped ESG in Florida.”
Instead of banning log-burners; discouraging the eating of sausages and deciding (for us) that cars are a luxury we poor people can no longer afford, he accepts the climate is changing and protects his people, saying he was “glad to be strengthening our infrastructure while further preparing our state for natural disasters”.
Donald Trump is hoping to once again be the Republican candidate
As we approach the autumn, mask mandates and Covid vaccine coercion rhetoric is yet again increasing in the US. De Santis and his trusted State Surgeon General Dr Joseph Ladapo are heading it off at the pass, publicly discouraging people from taking any further shots as the cost-benefit analysis does not warrant the risk in their opinions. Once again taking on the persuasive forces of the FDA, the CDC and The White House demonstrates the sort of cojones that should get him into The White House.
Of course, standing in his way is Donald Trump, a man who only gathers more popularity with each indictment. If he were out of the picture, De Santis would surely be en route to take his smart, beautiful wife, Casey and their three children straight to The White House. Trump spoke of "draining the swamp" but RDS goes further, writing on the emails which arrive in my inbox,
“Dear DC political class,
"The party is over. The Left thinks I am a threat. The media thinks I am a threat. "The corporate elites think I am a threat. I am. I'm their worst nightmare. I will never bend the knee to their radical agenda.
"Let’s fight back. Let’s take action. Let’s win.”
Be still my beating heart… for that is what a real man sounds like.