TALLAHASSEE, FLA. (WSVN) - Civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump and other community leaders had pointed words for Florida’s governor about the state’s decision to block an African American studies course unless certain changes are made.

Speaking at a rally held at the Florida State Capitol on Wednesday, Crump did not mince words.

“Gov. DeSantis, are you really trying to lead us into an era akin to communism that provides censorship of free thoughts?” he said.

The fiery protest was held days after the DeSantis administration rejected an Advanced Placement African American studies course.

“We will stand on the American principle of the free exchange of ideas,” said Crump.

The governor said the course, a pilot program partly taught in 60 schools, including one in Florida, simply goes too far.

“What’s one of the lessons about? Queer theory. Now, who would say that an important part of Black history is queer theory?” said DeSantis.

Among the lawmakers who spoke at Wednesday’s rally was Florida State Sen. Fentrice Driskell.

“Ron DeSantis has clearly demonstrated that he wants to dictate whose story does and doesn’t belong,” she said.

The 82-page framework does include a topic called “Black queer studies.” The 28-week course also covers the African diaspora, “Art, Literature, and Music,” and the civil rights movement.

College Board, the nonprofit that developed the course, on Tuesday said that changes are coming.

In a statement, a College Board spokesperson wrote, “Before a new AP course is made broadly available, it is piloted in a small number of high schools to gather feedback from high schools and colleges. The official course framework incorporates this feedback and defines what students will encounter on the AP Exam for college credit and placement.”

The Florida Department of Education described the College Board’s decision as a win. In a statement, a spokesperson wrote, “We are glad the College Board has recognized that the originally submitted course curriculum is problematic, and we are encouraged to see the College Board express a willingness to amend.”

Still, attorneys said, they have three honors students ready to sue if the course does not come to Florida in some form, especially since some other AP European history classes are offered.

“Just like those histories have value, my history has got value, too,” said Florida Sen. Shevrin Jones.

In their statement, the College Board spokesperson said the AP African American studies course framework has been in development for about a year, and they are expecting the new changes to the curriculum to be released on Feb. 1, the first day of African American History Month.

7News has asked the College Board whether or not any of the changes will incorporate or take into account DeSantis’ comments and whether any of the sections will be taken out, but as of Wednesday night, a spokesperson has not responded.

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