Updated: Oct 2, 2020
by James Lane
Who Gets to Decide the Truth?
We've all heard the rumors and seen small glimpses of the truth. We've all watched as a random post disappeared, or a fact-checker got something wrong and censored the wrong post. We've all tried to ignore the conspiracy theorists that claim big tech is censoring the Right.
I certainly didn't think much of it until it happened to me.
On Saturday, September 26th, I wrote a controversial article entitled 'The REAL Truth About the Death of Breonna Taylor'. I didn't think anything of it because I used the actual warrant, police reports, and sourced media when writing it.
I posted the freshly minted article to all of my social media platforms and watched the read counter jump.
Something strange began to happen; all of a sudden, the readership began to dwindle. Stunned, I decided to pay for an advertisement on Facebook. This is nothing new, as I've used this option multiple times to reach new readers. Only minutes had passed when an unfamiliar notification on my phone stole any sense of comfort from my being.
How can you reject me?
Stage One: Rejection
How could they? I don't understand! I source all my information. I make sure to use the facts with as little fluff as possible. I mean, people need to be entertained, but where am I supposed to go?
[raises hands in exhasperation]
What did I do?!
What am I supposed to do? Is this going to happen to all of my posts?
Will people who enjoy my work just not be able to see it anymore? Where do I complain? How do I fight this?
I'm Pissed off!
Stage Two: Anger
Who the HELL do these people think they are? Is my money no good for them? I am working my butt off to build this company and provide factual, entertaining, and groundbreaking content to people, and you get to decide to just stop that?
In my anger, I decided to research just how to fight back. The further I looked, the more garbled nonsense I found. Eventually, I located an appeal button that offered no avenue of dispute, just the option to click and cross your fingers.
There's nothing else I can do, no phone number to call or office to drive to?
I'm so confused…
Stage Three: Confusion
There has to be something else I can do, some other way.
This makes absolutely no sense. How can the left spread such horrible lies and get away with it while factual conservative, republican, and libertarian articles, viewpoints, and values get blacklisted?
Who do I trust? What do I do?
I can take legal action against them.
This is still America, right? Can't I sue them for violating my First Amendment rights?
Section 230, you say?
The Communications Decency Act?
"No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider."
Wait a minute, I think I understand!
Stage Four: Understanding
Oh, my God!
I think I understand.
If what I said above is correct, then Facebook is legally recognized as a neutral host and cannot be held accountable for what anyone says or does on their platform. This creates a legal gray area or loophole per se, where Facebook can regulate what people see and hear on their platform without fear of retribution in the form of lawsuits.
Wait, are you saying what I think you are saying?
Facebook is UN-SUEABLE?!
This is ridiculous!
Stage Five: Utter Frustration
So, I can't complain about this issue, nor can I call anyone about it. I am just expected to fall in line and accept the fact that my viewpoint is being suppressed. I am not mad anymore and have accepted that I will have to just write twice as many articles and double the effort to get our point across, yet there is one simple fact that persists.
I have been censored, and it's utterly frustrating!
The worst part is the lack of recourse, leading to a never-ending cycle of roadblocks and frustration.
Facebook has made themselves clear; they are in charge of free speech, and there's nothing we can do about it.
Does Facebook Have the Right to Control Free Speech?
After coming to terms with the Five Emotional Stages of Facebook Censorship, I decided to ask myself an important question.
Does Facebook Have the Right to Control Free Speech? The answer to that question is a resounding NO!
Facebook relies on people known as fact-checkers to flag down what they deem as, well, factual. These people are supposedly vetted and unbiased, yet they consistently flag and shutdown a significant amount of information from the Right. It has been demonstrated repeatedly that big tech companies such as Facebook are participating in suppressing such information they deem unfit for their platform.
Keeping this in mind, we spoke about section 230, deeming Facebook a neutral entity and creating a loophole that makes them "un-sueable."
If Facebook can censor the president of the United States of America, are they still considered neutral?
Should they still be protected by the government?
This is still a free country, isn't it?
This moment will be defined as the moment in modern American History when the everyday men and women of the United States woke up from their slumber only to find that socialism and radical left-wing ideology had declared a cultural holy war against the American people. Defund the police and destroy capitalism? It's time we spoke up and discussed what is happening, among other things.
The American Reveille will be a symbol of the times.
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