Florida Gov. Jeb Bush on Monday blamed a spate of child abductions in Florida on a disintegration of “traditional, wholesome family life,” reports the Associated Press. Initially he argued that this state is no different from others in respect to such crimes, but then he acknowledged the problem may be worse in Florida because of its highly mobile population.
“It breaks my heart,” Bush told reporters after a bill-signing ceremony. “It’s disturbing to me as governor of the state that when I turn on the cable and see a story play out that it’s one of our citizens, and one of our most precious children.” He noted Florida has more new people moving into it than any other state, ranks third in the number leaving and has significant movement within its borders. “You don’t know who your next-door neighbor is,” Bush said. “The web of community life doesn’t surround these children to the extent that you would like to see.” Bush said there’s only so much government can do. “We can pass laws, and we have,” he said. “But at the end of the day if people don’t assume personal responsibility for the most precious thing that they have, which is their children, in a free society, it’s very difficult to eliminate these types of activities.”