I recently came across a post on Facebook by someone I did not know personally. It showed a screen-shot of a notice he had received from the Facebook Police saying that his post was removed because it violated their “Community Standards.” Now, this has become such a routine thing among conservative-thinking Facebook users that it might not otherwise raise an eyebrow, but the degree to which this particular post is based on fact makes it the very definition of “ludicrous” to suggest that it violates any community’s standards (much less Facebook’s) given all manner of rude and crude postings we see daily on that renowned platform for socializing.
When you read it (below), you will see immediately that each sentence states a historical fact that can be confirmed by a simple browse through a decent history book that describes the various period referenced. All are indisputably true…right down to the last one listed. What makes this post offensive and in violation of community standards is the last three words that point the finger of accusation in the direction of the socialistic leftists in our country that have, for the past century, chipped away at the very foundations of our freedom.
Many people are calling for the government to step in to stop Facebook’s obvious censorship of anything that attacks the leftist ideologues who dominate the Silicon Valley mega-giants of the social media world. I have to admit that I have thought about what could be done to return some semblance of balance to the algorithms that stifle freedom of expression for a large chunk of the American electorate, but each time I do, I find myself remembering what America is all about.
The First Amendment provides that “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech…” This seems to say it all, but a closer look tells me that the First Amendment applies ONLY to Congress. In other words, the federal government’s legislative body cannot make a federal law that diminishes the ability of a citizen of the United State to speak whatever the heck he/she feels like speaking in public.
What it does not do, however, is restrict any other entity – within that entity’s sphere of influence – from placing any restrictions it deems appropriate on the speech of those within that sphere. In other words, whether a state government or a city government or any private entity that controls a particular space in a physical building or an electronic platform such as Facebook, the entity in control of that “space” has the right to control what is or is not said therein.
In 99 percent of cases, this is a very good thing (although the state and local government have been restricted by state constitutions for the most part). It is that one percent represented by the electronic world of the internet that seems to be causing serious heartburn in recent years.
The fact remains that if we, as conservative, America-loving patriots, claim to truly believe in the rights of freedom, then we cannot deny that the owners of the platform have a right to decide what they will accept for posting on their platform.
Truth be told, I have been posting frequently on Facebook for the past seven or so years and have only had two posts blocked by the “Police.” The ones who seem to be most frequently blocked are the ones who have a large number of followers and have developed a “public presence” that attracts media attention. The rest of us little fish in the sea can usually get away with saying whatever we can.
As I write this, at least three newcomers are attempting to establish a foothold in the social media world and therein lies the answer to the Facebook censorship issue. Competition is a thoroughly American concept that has made America Great and continues to allow American dominance in the world. However, in order for competition to exist, sometimes people have to temporarily inconvenience themselves a bit and jump in with both feet.
What I am saying is simply that we need to let go of our grip on our Facebook identities and re-establish them on a different platform. If we do not, then Facebook will win the battle and remain in a monopoly position in which it can enforce its will on the defenseless minions trapped within its grasp. Until Facebook sees declining revenue from advertisers who see declining impressions in their ad stats, nothing will change.
The last thing we need is more government intervention.
Competition and the marketplace are the only means to rein in the monsters of private censorship.
To do otherwise is to deny the freedoms we continually fight to retain.
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