Opinion

Lawmaker calls out celebs that boycott Florida, but patronize Cuba

A Florida congressman wants to know how rapper Jay Z can join a boycott of the Sunshine State, but still visit a totalitarian regime 90 miles from its shores.

On the Laura Ingraham radio show Tuesday, Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla., said celebrities who stand in judgment of Florida’s “stand your ground” law but have no problems with the Castro brothers’ dictatorship are “a little bit off” in their priorities.

jayz“Look, thank God we live in a free country, and people can opt to be silly and foolish, but that’s a contrast — they go to Cuba, and that’s okay,” Diaz-Balart said, according to The Hill.

“They hobnob with the regime; that’s okay. But they won’t go to Florida, where we’re free. That’s their choice, but I think their priorities are a little bit off.”

Jay-Z and fellow stars like Kanye West and Justin Timberlake have said they will follow entertainer Stevie Wonder’s lead in boycotting Florida venues because of the law, as part of the fallout from the George Zimmerman trial and his July 13 acquittal.

Jay Z and his wife, Beyoncé, visited Cuba in April as part of a wedding anniversary celebration. The visit drew attention and criticism on Capitol Hill for possibly violating the United States’ 53-year-old trade and travel embargo on the island country.

While Florida’s stand-your-ground law itself was not a factor in the Zimmerman trial, it has become a stand-in for liberal criticism of the verdict because part of it was included in instructions the jury received for deliberations.

Confirmations in the music world of who’s taking part in the boycott of Florida  are still a little sketchy. But for one of the most widely reported lists of participants, click here.

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