Conservatives’ greatest Achilles heel may be the naïve expectation that everyone else will abide by the same rules they do. That’s certainly apparent in the attempts by the David Frenches of the world to avoid imposing accountability for Big Tech, and their subsequent shock and horror when the Biden administration collaborates with tech giants to silence dissent.
Twitter and Facebook aren’t actually conducting biased censorship of conservatives, these Pollyannas will tell you. And even if they are censoring conservatives, it’s okay because they’re private corporations and they have the power to censor, suspend, and ban whatever and whomever they want.
Section 230 plainly permits companies to restrict access to content it deems “objectionable” without becoming a publisher. That’s the law. Trump’s executive order can’t override it—nor can rules drafted by his executive agencies. /2 🔒 https://t.co/x7c9xYk6Jn
— David French (@DavidAFrench) May 28, 2020
These people are correct that the First Amendment, a constitutional restriction on government, doesn’t govern private tech companies. But these tech giants’ latest collusion in a censorship campaign with the Biden White House shows that their manipulative power and political role in shrinking your freedom of speech extend far beyond that of private companies.
Counting even Republican politicians in their deep pockets, Facebook, Twitter, and other censoring corporations aren’t the diner-down-the-street equivalent of a “private business” in the “free market” they want you to think they are. The arguments of conservatives who want you to treat them like Mom and Pop’s might sound nice on paper, but their naïve defense of Big Tech’s unlimited power helped ensure tech platforms now have the ability to conduct the censorship campaigns they’re running with the president of the United States.
Of course, the authors of these libertarian arguments will agree this collusion is wrong and unconstitutional. But Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey couldn’t care less what they think. The tech giants may have found conservative defenses of their power useful, but they have no need to listen to the same people’s protestations now.
Big Tech and the Biden White House have taken advantage of conservatives’ age-old problem: expecting both
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