PURELY POLITICAL, James Buckley
Well, that’s it.
Now that Twitter is owned by an ardent supporter of freedom of speech and the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, his ownership apparently spells the end of freedom of speech to people of a certain political persuasion.
The First Amendment reads: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”
We’ve given up a little of that “free exercise” of religion because of the COVID-19 outbreak (“Two weeks to slow the spread!”). Abridgement of the freedom of speech has been under way for a long, long time (people in power really hate this “free speech” stuff), but has reached new crescendos in conjunction with the prodding of members of the press, the “entertainment” community, academia,and the political class, most of whom feel threatened by the free exchange of ideas, lest they lose their hard-earned and well-paid comfy positions.
As for “peaceably” assembling, that too is problematic. If you are assembling – peaceably or even not-so-peaceably – in parallel with something encouraged by the current establishment (Black Lives Matter, Antifa, critical race theory, transgenderism theology for toddlers, etc.), then your constitutional right to do so will be protected. If, however, you are assembling peaceably in opposition to current ideology, well, watch your step, buddy.
But I digress.
The real issue this week is Elon Musk, his Twitter purchase and the unhinged reactions by left-wing propagandists.
THE TWITTER TUMULT
Joy Reid nearly cried on her MSNBC show fretting over Twitter’s new owner: “Elon Musk’s companies have a history of open racism. You know, there’s been this lawsuit against Tesla, and he himself is a troll.”
One must appreciate the tactic: Accuse someone of racism, file a lawsuit, then read from the allegations in the lawsuit, all of which were made up but as they are now “public record.” The Joy Reids of the world can simply refer to the charges as if they are proven. Much as most of the media did, for example, with the Steele dossier and the Russian collusion charges.
Burbank Democrat Adam Schiff is back where he loves to be: in front of a camera accusing former President Donald Trump of impeachment-level misdeeds:
“I do agree certainly with the judge in California, Judge Carter,” U.S. Rep. Schiff intoned, “that there is compelling evidence that the president of the United States and others engaged with very possible criminal activity to obstruct Congress, to defraud the United States, to engage in conspiracy. I think that there is significant evidence of corrupt intent.” This is precisely the method Rep. Schiff used to falsely implicate Trump in various impeachable offenses during his presidency.
MSNBC chief legal correspondent Ari Melber whines: “If you own all of Twitter or Facebook or what have you, you don’t have to explain yourself. You don’t even have to be transparent. You could secretly ban one party’s candidate or all of its candidates, all of its nominees. Or you could just secretly turn down the reach of their stuff and turn up the reach of something else, and the rest of us might not even find out until after the election.”
Guess he never heard of Hunter Biden’s laptop. Everything Mr. Melber is worried about is exactly what Twitter, Facebook, Google and the rest of social media did to destroy the Trump presidency.
Here’s a short list of people banned from Twitter: President Trump, Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, Trump White House adviser Steve Bannon, conservative talk show host Alex Jones, Trump supporter Roger Stone, “My Pillow” CEO Mike Lindell, a vocal Trump supporter, Trump National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, Trump lawyer Sidney Powell and Project Veritas founder James O’Keefe.
Notice a pattern here?
The ACLU is afraid of Elon Musk’s Twitter purchase too: Executive Director Anthony Romero is quoted as having said “There’s a lot of danger having so much power in the hands of any one individual.” Funny that we never heard a word from the ACLU about the ownership of the various social media websites being “in the hands of any one individual” before now. (Can you say Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Dorsey, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos?).
Amnesty International USA is concerned that the new Twitter sounding board could hurt “those most disproportionately impacted, including women, non-binary persons, and others.”
Here’s Elon Musk’s tweet on the subject: “Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated. I also want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots and authenticating all humans. Twitter has tremendous potential – I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it.”
Does that sound like a guy intent on unleashing hate and chaos among the vulnerable, especially those fragile “women and nonbinary persons?”
Currently, social media is set up to protect left-wing ideology against conservative thoughts, emotions, and/or criticism and everyone knows it, even the above-mentioned MSNBC boneheads.
Twitter falls under various countries’ censorship demands. For example, in Britain, “hate speech” is defined as: “all forms of expression which spread, incite, promote or justify hatred based on intolerance on the grounds of disability, ethnicity, social origin, gender, sex, gender reassignment, nationality, race, religion or belief, sexual orientation, color, genetic features, language, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth or age.”
Based upon the above list (a list that will no doubt continue to grow), there isn’t much that one could say that wouldn’t hurt someone somewhere sometime.
I don’t know where this assault on verbal expression is going or where it will end, but one thing is clear: Freedom of speech is under siege around the world, and if we in the U.S. don’t protect it, who will?
Other than Elon Musk, that is.
James Buckley is a longtime Montecito resident. He welcomes questions or comments at firstname.lastname@example.org. Readers are invited to visit jimb.substack.com, where Jim’s Journals are on file. He also invites people to subscribe to Jim’s Journal.