Tuesday, January 12, 2021
Ron Paul Posts Criticism of Censorship on Social Media Shortly Before Facebook Blocks Him – JONATHAN TURLEY
The riots are being used as a license to rollback on free speech and retaliate against conservatives. In the meantime, the silence of academics and many in the media is deafening. Many of those who have spoken for years about the dark period of McCarthyism and blacklisting are either supporting this censorship or remaining silent in the face of it. Now that conservatives are the targets, speech controls and blacklists appear understandable or even commendable.
The move against Paul, a long champion of free speech, shows how raw and comprehensive this crackdown has become. It shows how the threat to free speech has changed. It is like having a state media without state control. These companies are moving in unison but not necessarily with direct collusion. The riot was immediately taken as a green light to move against a huge variety of sites and individuals. As we have seen in Europe, such censorship becomes an insatiable appetite for greater and greater speech control. Even Germany’s Angela Merkel (who has a long history of anti-free speech actions) has criticized Twitter’s actions as inimical to free speech. Yet, most law professors and media figures in the United States remain silent.
Well, I'm a law professor and I'm not silent. I'm chirping as loudly as I can! Reposts don't necessarily mean endorsements, but I unequivocally endorse what Prof. Turley is saying, and I hope to God that Prof. Rubenfeld is correct that this is all blatantly unconstitutional in his op-ed piece in the WSJ this morning. I make it a point not to criticize fellow law professors, mostly out of healthy sense of self preservation. But you can well imagine what my feelings are about this. Some con law person ought to put together a letter on this and I would gladly sign it. Even better would be some sort of general strike against Amazon, Twitter, Google etc., such as a day without consulting the internet, just to let them know how we feel.