Have you been pining for a more “unplugged” life-style? Are you sick of constantly battling with technology, and getting headaches from squinting at a computer screen all day? Do you want to hide half of your Facebook friends for spamming your feed with Farmville requests? Well, guess what? Florida may just be the place for you.
Florida’s elected lawmakers recently approved a bill banning all Internet cafes. This was the result of speculation that a charity affiliated with Lt. Governor Jennifer Carroll was an Internet gambling ring. This ultimately led to Carroll’s resignation.
However, when the bill was written, it was done in such a way that, instead of simply banning Internet cafés and slot machines, the poorly written language outlawed every single computer in the state, according to a recent lawsuit.
Florida was home to over 1,000 Internet cafes, all of which were shut down immediately. Included in the mandatory shutdowns was Miami-Dade’s Incredible Investments, LLC - an establishment that provided migrant workers with Internet access, reports the Tampa Bay Times.
The owner of said café, Consuelo Zapata, is currently suing the State after her team of attorneys discovered that the bill was written so expeditiously and without thought that it could be applied to any computer or mobile device with access to an internet connection, reports the Miami Herald.
Specifically, the bill defines slot machines as illegal and as "any system or network of devices" that could be potentially utilized in a “game of chance.”
Any of us who have ever played online poker for real money know that it can be done on a laptop, mobile phone, tablet, etc. And the Miami law firm Kluger, Kaplan, Silverman, Katzen & Levine, with input from Constitutional Law Attorney and Harvard professor Alan Dershowitz, agrees.
The lawsuit claims that the ban was implemented “in a frenzy fueled by distorted judgment in the wake of a scandal that included the Lieutenant Governor’s resignation,” and ardently claims that the bill is, at its foundation, unconstitutional.
It has been alleged that Rick Scott dubbed the ban “the right thing for our state.” Perhaps by now he has changed his tune. Otherwise he could have an angry mob of Floridians coming after him demanding he legalize their iPads!
You may read the full complaint here.