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Florida’s Spring Break Shockwave: Violence Spikes!

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Here is what’s going on: This year, the thousands of party-goers that go to Miami each spring will have to deal with a different reality. Governor Ron Desantis of Florida and Miami officials are taking drastic measures to quell the pandemonium following three years of spring break violence.

Unruly guests: Last year, when throngs of students flocked to the Sunshine State for a break from their studies, Miami Beach saw widespread violence that led to 105 firearm seizures, nearly 500 arrests, and two deadly shootings.

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New measures: Desantis plans to send 45 state troopers to Miami Beach this year to conduct DUI checkpoints, a 6 p.m. beach curfew, and obligatory bag checks to avert mayhem among spring breakers.

  • Success: Residents are happy with the state’s efforts; a restaurant owner in Miami Beach hailed the governor for the “best spring break” his company has ever had.

Why is it important? Desantis’s “tough on crime” policy, which sets him apart from his Democratic counterparts in states and towns plagued by violence, is a pillar of his administration.

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  • Sending a message: Desantis is letting people know that Florida is a law-and-order state as the state prepares for an inflow of Haitian migrants escaping violent gangs.

Reaction: Civil rights advocates contend that the limitations are an excessively discriminatory response to predominantly black gatherings.

  • However, the first black police chief in the city, Wayne Jones of Miami Police, disputed the claims, saying that his officers target “bad behavior—not race or color.”
  • Additionally: Miami Beach Mayor Steven Meiner denied any racism, saying that “people’s safety is my moral responsibility, and it isn’t safe right now.”
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