After an international traveler spent their first trip to America in the Sunshine State, they left with optimistic dreams of calling it home. Since then, constant negative opinions about the area have thrown a wrench in their original plan. They had to ask, why does everybody hate Florida so much? Residents and tourists alike responded in droves.
Note: Some quotes in this piece have been lightly edited for grammar.
1: Bursting Your Bubble
One Floridian says that many people come to the Sunshine State with dreams of easy living, kicking their feet up in the sand, sipping margaritas, and watching the sunset every night, and that’s just not how it is. “It’s easier to blame other external things for a disappointing life than to blame yourself, hence the hate.”
2: Not Florida’s Fault
Another person agrees with the above sentiment, saying people tend to blame the place instead of themselves. “People move here thinking it will be some easy-living paradise, and then…whoa! You mean I have to get a job and live like a normal person, pay bills, and deal with stuff like other places?”
3: Seasonal Strife
One former Floridian was born and raised in the state and said the lack of elevation, seasons, and abundance of insects made it less desirable for them. “I love to hike and explore, and for me, Florida is so flat that any ‘hike’ seems like a walk. Also, Florida is a huge tourist trap, and [has] many crazed people crammed into that peninsula.”
4: Taking Things Personally
Another Floridian ragged on their home state for unbearably hot weather, rude people, unruly drivers, and “weird things happening all the time.” The caveat? “This is all mostly personal opinion, though. Some people love the heat and don’t have any problems like that.”
5: Easy Target
“Every single state has its problems, but it’s fun to make fun of Florida,” one person said. From a seedy history with illegal goods to political corruption and outlandish crimes, they say the state is basically a meme that feeds off of many different things.
6: Makes Sense
One 23-year-old has lived in South Florida their entire life, so while they can’t draw comparisons, they see where haters come from. “It’s hot. Really hot. The drivers suck. There are lots of bugs that freak most people out,” the list goes on. “There are a lot of junkies and homeless people walking around constantly, overstepping people’s boundaries and begging for more on every corner.”
7: Hate Us ‘Cause You Ain’t Us
After growing up in Florida and moving to Washington State, one person says they have a pretty good idea of where the negativity stems. “A lot of the hate on Florida comes from the ‘Florida Man’ stereotype (which has a grain of truth to it) and, honestly, a little bit from jealousy.” They continue, “The state’s dysfunctional politics prevent any meaningful change from happening.”
8: Too Much Sprawl
One 28-year-old grew up in Southwest Florida and always resented the sprawl and “lack of place” they experienced. “The necessity of having a car to get anywhere limited what I could do for fun as a kid (and as a drunk adult). The lack of young adults also makes me feel isolated in public places when at least 50% of people surrounding me are over 55.”
9: Focus on the Negatives
“People often talk about the bad more than the good,” a South Floridian warned. But that doesn’t mean they were free of complaints. “People are rude, fraud is everywhere, cost of living is high, wages are low, poor customer service, traffic, aggressive driving, lack of public transportation… basically a lot of big city problems.”
10: Sweltering Summers
One resident kept it simple with their complaints. “It’s hot, expensive, and the state government is terrible.”
11: Mean Mugging
The original poster in the online forum claimed that everybody they met in Florida was super nice. A Florida native begs to differ. “If you think Floridians are super nice, wait ’til you meet people from other states. Florida is like the bottom level of the people being nice food chain.”
12: Stick to Tourism
A Tampa resident and self-proclaimed “rare native” of the state says it’s a beautiful place to visit but not to stay and make a living. “It’s a state where rich people live, and the rest of the middle-class retirees of the country go to die. What is created in that is an economic landscape of ‘service’ and meager wages.”
13: Old Heads
According to one resident, the “old men” who are large and in charge are causing less than stellar living conditions in Florida. “They don’t care about the future, so there is no money for education, no urban planning, no one cares about the environment, and no one recycles.”
14: How Bad Can It Be
Another Floridian thinks haters have a lot to say, but clearly, it’s not that bad, as some areas are so overpopulated they barely have room to develop further. “Every state has craziness. You’re just not going to see it. And now the whole ‘Florida man’ trope has made things worse.”
15: Hating For Fun
“Most people that hate Florida are just miserable and looking for something to complain about,” one 20+ year resident says. “Sure, there are some negatives, like the higher cost of living, and we get hurricanes from time to time, but it’s warm all winter, the beaches are great, and there’s plenty to do.”
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