Former President Donald Trump announced at a July 7 press conference that he is the lead class representative in a lawsuit being filed with the Southern District of Florida against Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, Twitter’s Jack Dorsey, and Google’s Sundar Pichai.
In a July 8 op-ed for the Wall Street Journal, Trump noted that if Big Tech can censor him, "they can censor you — and believe me, they are."
The Big Tech platforms "are manipulating and controlling the political debate itself," he wrote.
Consider content that was censored in the past year. Big Tech companies banned users from their platforms for publishing evidence that showed the coronavirus emerged from a Chinese lab, which even the corporate media now admits may be true. In the middle of a pandemic, Big Tech censored physicians from discussing potential treatments such as hydroxychloroquine, which studies have now shown does work to relieve symptoms of Covid-19. In the weeks before a presidential election, the platforms banned the New York Post — America’s oldest newspaper — for publishing a story critical of Joe Biden’s family, a story the Biden campaign did not even dispute.Pointing out the obvious, Trump noted that most egregious was that "in the weeks after the election, Big Tech blocked the social-media accounts of the sitting president."
As an example of how Big Tech is going after American citizens with the same fervor it continues to go after him, Trump cited the cases of three American families.
- Michigan teacher Jennifer Horton was banned from Facebook "for sharing an article questioning whether mandatory masks for young children are healthy," Trump noted. "Later, when her brother went missing, she was unable to use Facebook to get the word out."
- Colorado physician Kelly Victory was deplatformed by YouTube "after she made a video for her church explaining how to hold services safely" amid the pandemic.
- Kiyan Michael of Florida and her husband, Bobby, "lost their 21-year-old son in a fatal collision caused by a twice-deported illegal alien. Facebook censored them after they posted on border security and immigration enforcement," Trump noted.
Trump's lawsuit is filed in conjunction with the America First Policy Institute. The suit seeks damages to deter such behavior in the future and injunctions restoring his accounts.
"Our lawsuits argue that Big Tech companies are being used to impose illegal and unconstitutional government censorship," Trump wrote.
The liability protections Big Tech companies received in the 1990s are being exploited by Democrats in Congress "to coerce platforms into censoring their political opponents," Trump wrote. "In recent years, we have all watched Congress haul Big Tech CEOs before their committees and demand that they censor 'false' stories and 'disinformation' — labels determined by an army of partisan fact-checkers loyal to the Democrat Party. As the cases of fellow plaintiffs Ms. Horton, Dr. Victory and the Michael family demonstrate, in practice this amounts to suppression of speech that those in power do not like."
Trump added: "The Supreme Court has held that Congress can’t use private actors to achieve what the Constitution prohibits it from doing itself. In effect, Big Tech has been illegally deputized as the censorship arm of the U.S. government. This should alarm you no matter your political persuasion. It is unacceptable, unlawful and un-American."
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