Make no mistake about it. Free speech is on the ropes in the United States of America.
But it’s not exclusively the government that’s assaulting it.
We have to remember the US is unique in how it has strong political protections for free speech. This makes it harder for the federal government, which is quite polarized on partisan lines, to easily pass legislation that undermines freedom of expression.
However, that has not fully deterred the enemies of traditional American freedoms from pursuing freedom-crushing schemes. Hence, their constant use of Big Tech to advance their liberty-destroying agenda. At its core, Big Tech plays the role of the Pinkerton for the managerial regime in how it carries out the agenda that the regime can’t do via conventional legislative means.
Just ask Federalist Senior Editor John Daniel Davidson what that feels like. Davidson was locked out of his Twitter account at the end of March for the simple offense of stating a biological reality. Namely, pointing out that Assistant Secretary of Health Rachel Levine is a man.
Since Tesla founder and Paypal co-founder Elon Musk bought Twitter, many have hoped that new leadership at Twitter could prevent such incidents of censorship.
Federalist Editor-in-Chief Mollie Hemingway is one of those individuals who is cautiously optimistic about those prospects. Hemingway tweeted on May 4, 2022, “@FDRLST senior editor @johnddavidson for calling a man a man. Are truth and facts allowed back on Twitter,@elonmusk?”
Twitter’s war on freedom of the press includes censoring @FDRLST senior editor @johnddavidson for calling a man a man. Are truth and facts allowed back on Twitter, @elonmusk? pic.twitter.com/ru44PwLwac
— Mollie (@MZHemingway) May 4, 2022
Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene instantly re-assured Hemingway that she would be taking charge of protecting speech in the case that a Musk-led Twitter is not capable of creating those conditions. Greene tweeted that same day
“This is why I introduced the 21st Century FREE Speech Act to protect freedom of speech for everyone and stop Big Tech from controlling content in order to control politics.”
This is why I introduced the 21st Century FREE Speech Act to protect freedom of speech for everyone and stop Big Tech from controlling content in order to control politics. https://t.co/uoy8BE5g5I
— Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (@RepMTG) May 4, 2022
Greene introduced this bill, HR 7613, on April 28. Part of this bill’s aim is to “abolish Section 230 in favor of a liability protection framework that marries that Section’s original intent with the ensuing 25 years of enormous technological change”, while continuing “liability protection for third-party speech and urge family-friendly moderation, without providing limitless, special protection for tech platforms’ own speech and viewpoint censorship.”
This is a good first step. Liberty conservatives must not fall into the perpetual discourse trap where they spend large sums of time endlessly debating and talking about doing something while doing nothing of legislative substance.
Legislative action, not perpetual debate, is what will make things right in politics.