Will ban remain on feds' collusion with social media to censor speech?

July 19, 2023
World Net Daily

This story was originally published by the WND News Center.

A federal judge's ban that prevents the Joe Biden administration from colluding with social media corporations to censor speech Biden dislikes should remain in place, according to a brief filed in a federal appeals court by the New Civil Liberties Alliance.

"The injunction allows the government to fulfill its legitimate functions while prohibiting routine and persistent interference with First Amendment rights to free speech. It should not stay while this case proceeds because the injury to our clients and the American people is far greater than the non-existent harms the Government posits from prohibiting it from silencing people," explained John Vecchione, counsel for the NCLA.

The organization explained, "Federal officials have threatened, pressured, and colluded with social media platforms in a years-long campaign to suppress perspectives that contradict government-approved views on hotly disputed topics like mask mandate efficacy, Covid-19 vaccine concerns, and the virus’s origins. The campaign has specifically targeted influential scientific figures like NCLA clients, Drs. Jayanta Bhattacharya, Martin Kulldorff, and Aaron Kheriaty, as well as activist Jill Hines. All have been blacklisted, shadow-banned, de-boosted, throttled, and censored on social media."

WND reported that the July 4 order from U.S. District Judge Terry A. Doughty of Louisiana banned White House officials from meeting with tech companies to scheme "about social media censorship."

His ruling found that Biden essentially was operating a "Ministry of Truth," demanding social media companies suppress and censor views with which the Biden political machine disagreed.

The president since then has been filing appeals trying to get that ruling overturned.

A later report revealed some of the actual Biden team players who have been integral in censoring American speech.

Anthony Fauci, Biden's former medical adviser, was identified as one of those who "sought publicly and privately to censor social media posts over COVID-19 content."

Also involved was Clarke Humphrey, "digital director" for Biden's COVID-19 team, who demanded Twitter remove a post from Robert F. Kennedy Jr. about the coronavirus.

His demand was that the opinion expressed be removed "ASAP."

Humphrey's colleague, Rob Flaherty, also played a significant part in Biden's anti-free speech agenda.

He "led a dogged campaign to coerce Twitter, Facebook, and other social media platforms to remove content about COVID-19 that went against the Biden administration‘s policies," the report said.

And he started bullying the companies.

"I’ve been asking you guys pretty directly, over a series of conversations, for a clear accounting of the biggest issues you are seeing on your platform when it comes to vaccine hesitancy, and the degree to which borderline content – as you define it – is playing a role," he warned. He demanded to know what actions were taken "to ensure you are not making our country’s vaccine hesitancy problem worse."

Another Biden staffer, Andy Slavitt, joined in, turning to threats.

"Internally, we have been considering our options on what to do" because Facebook had not complied immediately with Biden's demands for censorship, he threatened.

The Constitution doesn't allow the government to censor private speech, yet this was the goal of the scheming.

One scenario involving Slavitt played out with former New York Times reporter Alex Berenson, who now is suing Slavitt.

Slavitt demanded Twitter deplatform Berenson over his questions, concerns, and research about the side effects of the COVID shots being forced on people. Those side effects now are known to include a variety of complications, including death.

The NCLA said it has filed a brief with the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals asking that Doughty's order remain.

Doughty had said, "Although this case is still relatively young, and at this stage, the court is only examining it in terms of plaintiffs’ likelihood of success on the merits, the evidence produced thus far depicts an almost dystopian scenario. During the COVID-19 pandemic, a period perhaps best characterized by widespread doubt and uncertainty, the United States government seems to have assumed a role similar to an Orwellian 'Ministry of Truth.'"

Mark Chenoweth, NCLA chief, said, "Judge Doughty could not have been more careful in detailing exceptions to the preliminary injunction in order to protect valid government interests in curtailing unlawful speech. Nevertheless, the government cries wolf and claims otherwise. Apparently, what the government really wants is to continue shutting down protected speech."

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