Prior to the billionaire Elon Musk’s acquisition of the social media network Twitter, individuals who expressed conservative views or questioned Democratic government decrees were banned or barred. Donald Trump, the president of the United States, was among individuals whose accounts were suspended.
Two days after the invasion of the U.S. Capitol, on January 8, 2021, Twitter announced its intention to permanently suspend Trump’s account, along with his more than 80 million followers, “owing to the danger of further inciting violence.” Twitter was the judge and jury in determining if the president had committed any wrongdoing.
The social media company stated at the time that Trump’s remarks breached Twitter’s “glorification of violence” policy.
The 45th President filed a lawsuit against the prohibition. In May, U.S. District Judge James Donato of San Francisco rejected Trump’s complaint alleging that Twitter’s action violated his First Amendment rights.
This year, in response to the censorship of his tweets on the social media platform, Trump introduced his new social media network, Truth Social. While the litigation was ongoing, participation on his new site surged, with over 4.5 million followers.
Trump has stated that he has no intentions to use Twitter again. Trump’s attorney, John Coale, told Reuters on Monday, “We want him to have the right to get back on” Twitter, noting that the lawsuit involves the right to free expression on social media sites in the United States.
In a move that came one day before he launched his campaign to return to the White House, former President Donald Trump filed an appeal in federal court Monday in a lawsuit against former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and the federal government over Twitter’s 2021 decision to permanently suspend his account.
In their Monday court filing at the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, Trump’s attorneys requested a court order compelling Twitter to “immediately reinstate” the account, as well as compensatory and punitive penalties for the suspension.
Regarding the federal government, the Constitution prohibits it from blocking unfavorable speech, Trump’s lawyers argued, so authorities use big tech as a workaround.
The government has the authority to repeal Communications Decency Act section 230.
“Congress gave social media companies and other Internet denizens a golden gift enjoyed by no one else in the publishing industry: immunity from liability based on hosting or removing content on their platforms,” the brief says.
The government utilizes social media platforms as “cat’s paws” to censor opinions and information on subjects of fundamental significance to Americans, including those that turn out to be accurate or at least contested.
The attorneys mention the laptop of Hunter Biden, the coronavirus Wuhan lab leak scenario, the efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine, and the integrity of the 2020 election as instances when the government influenced the content of social media platforms.
“Most people once believed these to be crackpot ideas; many still do. But crackpot ideas sometimes turn out to be true. The earth does revolve around the sun, and it was Hunter Biden, not Russian disinformation agents, who dropped off a laptop full of incriminating evidence at a repair shop in Delaware,” the brief reads.
More on this story via The Republic Brief:
“Galileo spent his remaining days under house arrest for spreading heretical ideas, and thousands of dissidents today are arrested or killed by despotic governments eager to suppress ideas they disapprove of. But this is not the American way. We believe the path to truth is forged by exposing all ideas to opposition, debate, and discussion.” CONTINUE READING…