- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 13, 2020

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Wednesday compared starting the school year amid the coronavirus pandemic to the U.S. Navy SEAL raid that resulted in the death of Osama bin Laden.

Mr. DeSantis, a Republican who served in the Navy, made the connection after several schools in the state resumed classes this week for the first time since the outbreak erupted.

“Martin County Superintendent Laurie Gaylord told me she viewed reopening her schools as a mission akin to a Navy SEAL operation,” Mr. DeSantis said during a news address.

“Just as the SEALs surmounted obstacles to bring Osama bin Laden to justice, so too would the Martin County School system find a way to provide parents with a meaningful choice of in-person instruction or continued distance learning,” Mr. DeSantis continued.

Mr. DeSantis was hesitant to impose statewide restrictions in Florida when cases of COVID-19, the contagious disease caused by the new coronavirus, began appearing earlier this year.

Florida has since been hit particularly hard by the coronavirus pandemic and is currently reporting thousands of new cases and dozens of new related-deaths each day.

Nonetheless, Mr. DeSantis noted Wednesday that a number of school districts throughout the state have resumed in-person instruction this week and said others plan to follow suit.

Children account for an incredibly small percentage of the Americans who have tested positive for COVID-19, and cases of kids dying from the disease are few and far between.

But children are by no means completely immune from the coronavirus, and they are still capable of transmitting it to others.

Bin Laden, the former leader of Al Qaeda and mastermind of the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, was killed during the 2011 raid of his compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

Ms. Gaylord, the superintendent cited by the governor, spoke with Mr. DeSantis by phone on Tuesday this week, the Martin County School District confirmed later.

“She shared with the Governor that she had encouraged our District leadership team to approach the reopening of schools using the characteristics of leadership, risk mitigation and diligence exhibited by SEALs as guiding principles, as the COVID-19 pandemic has created an unprecedented back to school season for schools across the nation,” a public informations office for the school district told The Washington Times. “Her intent was to honor the commitment and bravery displayed by SEAL Team Six while also demonstrating to the Governor the District’s commitment to safely reopening schools.”

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Manage Newsletters

Copyright © 2020 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide