Is Twitter right to permanently ban Marjorie Taylor Greene?
- Majorie Taylor Green (MTG) is the freshman Republican congresswoman from Georgia. MTG was elected in November 2020 to represent the state’s 14th congressional district, in which she won by over 75%.
- On January 2, 2022, Twitter announced its permanent ban of MTG’s personal account for “tweets that repeatedly violated” their COVID-19 misinformation policy. In response, she posted to Telegram that “social media platforms can’t stop the truth from being spread far and wide. Big Tech can’t stop the truth. Communist Democrats can’t stop the truth.”
- Less than 24 hours later, Facebook announced they temporarily suspended Greene’s account also for “misinformation.”
- In response to her Twitter ban and Facebook suspension, Greene posted on GETTR, “Facebook has joined Twitter in censoring me. This is beyond censorship of speech. [...] they too think the CDC managed #VAERS system on our own government websites are misinformation. [...] Who appointed Twitter and Facebook to be the authorities of information and misinformation? When Big Tech decides what political speech of elected Members is accepted and what’s not then they are working against our government and against the interest of our people.”
- A 2020 Pew Research Center poll found that 37% of Americans believe that social media sites intentionally censor disagreeable political viewpoints, but the belief is more common for Republicans.
The start of the New Year has come with many issues like school closures, the rapidly spreading Omicron virus, shortages of COVID testing kits, etc. But what has rightfully captivated many Americans is Twitter's newest exercise of censorship through a permanent ban, this time applied to sitting congresswoman Rep. Marjorie Greene's personal account. Once again, Big Tech has censored another conservative and alternative thinkers who do not align with the mainstream narrative.
Greene may use strong rhetoric in her speech, but these sites must be fair to all their users, which means letting her followers hear her. If one would not like exposure, they can go elsewhere on the internet. Perhaps the most disturbing aspect about how these social media platforms censor is how they blatantly pick and choose, only accepting speech that echos Leftist thought or Democrat party agendas turned into mainstream media talking points. No reporter or politician was de-platformed for perpetuating the Russian collusion misinformation hoax, which was weaponized against Trump throughout his term, for example.
Banning Greene, while at the same time allowing extremists and dictators from all over the globe to have a say on Twitter is a glaringly unfair policy. The Chinese government systemically kills and imprisons their Uyghurs population, yet Twitter has not banned any Chinese official. Banning dissenters from Twitter is not the solution. All it does is move them away to different sites like GETTR, which already is seeing a mass influx of former Twitter users. Twitter must rethink its partisan censorship actions.
Representative Greene's personal Twitter accounts was banned because of a tweet that violated Twitter's COVID-19 'misinformation policy,' which is a serious issue given the ongoing spike in COVID-19 cases. Now more than ever, the importance of people knowing the truth about what's going on as we continue to fight this pandemic is paramount. Greene's misleading information not only undermines the hard work of those fighting to keep us safe but could also cost people their lives.
Twitter's COVID-19 misleading information policy outlines a strike system in which five strikes obtained as a result of posting tweets containing misleading information will result in a 'permanent suspension' of the account. Seeing as how this is not the first time Greene has violated Twitter's policies and has been temporarily banned in the past for similar offenses, Greene should be familiar with the strike system and understand why the consequences apply to her as well.
Greene has time and again been reprimanded for spreading misleading information about topics other than COVID-19. In January of 2021, Greene was suspended for making false claims regarding voter fraud and denying the participation of White supremacists in the Capitol insurrection. Greene's trustworthiness in telling the truth on social media is being called into question. While Greene has argued that the ban violates her right to free speech, she fails to realize that she is free to spread misleading information in places that don't operate under a misleading information policy. Posting on Twitter means following the platform's guidelines and policies. Permanently suspending her account is not only well within Twitter's rights but will benefit the country greatly.