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State Song Facing Opposition from Suwannee River Lawmakers

April 2nd, 2008 by flanews

Efforts to change the state song, Old Folks at Home, are bogging down at the state Capitol. The song makes references to “old darkeys” and is considered offensive to many. Even Governor Charlie Crist refused to play the song at his inauguration. Opposition to the change is coming from Senators whose district contains the Suwannee River. Senator Steve Oelrich said the state shouldnt give up on the song.

It would be appropriate, I think, to change whatever offending lyrics people have and keep the song, mainly because of the melody, said Oelrich.

But others Like Senator Al Lawson say Florida has outlived the lyrics.

So now we have a song that needs to be changed, and I thing we ought to
fall in line just like we did before and get rid of a song that is very offensive to everybody. It shouldnt be a big deal, said Oelrich.

Time is running out in the session. The final four weeks will concentrate mostly on cutting the state budget. Not getting the bill heard would be a victory for those who like the song.

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