Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and his Stop WOKE Act suffered a two-punch blow Thursday as a federal judge blocked parts of the controversial law and a coalition of civil liberties groups filed a lawsuit against what they are calling \u0022racially motivated censorship.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022Under our constitutional scheme, the remedy for repugnant speech is more speech, not enforced silence.\u0022\r\n\r\nU.S. District Judge Mark Walker, an appointee of former President Barack Obama, issued a preliminary injunction against portions of the Stop the Wrongs to Our Kids and Employees Act, also called the Individual Freedom Act, saying it violates First Amendment free speech protections and the 14th Amendment\u0026#039;s Due Process Clause.\r\n\r\nThe Stop WOKE Act—sometimes also referred to as the Individual Freedom Act and the \u0022white discomfort law\u0022—prohibits classroom discussions or corporate training that make students or workers feel uneasy about their race. The legislation is widely viewed by progressives as part of the GOP-led war on critical race theory, a graduate-level academic framework for understanding systemic racism in the United States.\r\n\r\n\u0022Florida\u0026#039;s legislators may well find plaintiffs\u0026#039; speech repugnant. But under our constitutional scheme, the remedy for repugnant speech is more speech, not enforced silence,\u0022 wrote Walker.\r\n\r\n\u0022If Florida truly believes we live in a post-racial society, then let it make its case,\u0022 the judge added. \u0022But it cannot win the argument by muzzling its opponents.\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nWalker\u0026#039;s ruling forayed into pop culture Zeitgeist:\r\n\r\n\r\nIn the popular television series \u0022Stranger Things,\u0022 the \u0022upside down\u0022 describes a parallel dimension containing a distorted version of our world... Recently, Florida has seemed like a First Amendment \u0022upside down.\u0022 Normally, the First Amendment bars the state from burdening speech, while private actors may burden speech freely. But in Florida, the First Amendment apparently bars private actors from burdening speech, while the state may burden speech freely... Now, like the heroine in \u0022Stranger Things,\u0022 this court is once again asked to pull Florida back from the \u0022upside down.\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\nRights groups hailed the decision, with Protect Democracy tweeting that \u0022the Stop WOKE Act is a speech code that takes a page from the authoritarian playbook\u0022 and \u0022seeks to censor ideas that challenge government officials\u0026#039; preferred narrative, muzzle independent institutions, and direct outrage toward disfavored groups.\u0022 \r\n\r\nAlso on Thursday, the ACLU, ACLU of Florida, Legal Defense Fund, and the law firm Ballard Spahr filed a lawsuit on behalf of a group of Florida professors, ​alleging the Stop WOKE Act violates the First and 14th amendments.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nThe suit calls the law \u0022racially motivated censorship that the Florida Legislature enacted, in significant part, to stifle widespread demands to discuss, study, and address systemic inequalities, following the nationwide protests that provoked discussions about race and racism in the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022Not only does the law prohibit instructors from teaching the Legislature\u0026#039;s disfavored viewpoints in the manner dictated by their disciplines, but its vague terms generate uncertainty about when and how the law will apply, thus creating an even greater chilling effect on academic expression,\u0022 the complaint states.\r\n\r\n\u0022The Stop WOKE Act is a speech code that takes a page from the authoritarian playbook.\u0022\r\n\r\nThe ACLU tweeted that \u0022the First Amendment protects the right to learn for educators and students. The Stop WOKE Act deprives classrooms of important learning tools and conversations to challenge racism and sexism and discriminates against Black educators and students.\u0022 \r\n\r\n\u0022We have a right to teach and learn free from state censorship and discrimination,\u0022 the group added. \r\n\r\nThursday\u0026#039;s ruling and lawsuit come two weeks after DeSantis suspended State Attorney Andrew Warren after he vowed not to prosecute people who violate Florida\u0026#039;s 15-week abortion ban or restrictions on gender-affirming healthcare.\r\n\r\nIn announcing the suspension—which Warren challenged in federal court on Wednesday as a violation of his First Amendment rights—DeSantis referred to the state attorney as \u0022woke.\u0022\r\n\r\nIn a Wednesday appearance on CNN, Warren explained that \u0022we\u0026#039;re fighting back to make sure that even though Ron DeSantis is governor, the First Amendment still has meaning. The Florida Constitution has meaning and elections still have meaning.\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nDeSantis has been called a hypocrite for touting Florida as a haven for freedom while signing laws that restrict reproductive, educational, and other liberties, including the right to protest.