Twitter bans President Trump permanently

Twitter has suspended President Donald Trump from its platform on Friday. In this image, Trump addresses the violence at the Capitol in a recorded statement released via his Twitter account on Thursday, January 7.

Twitter and Facebook suspended the social media accounts of President Donald Trump last week over concerns his messages could incite further violence like the siege on the U.S. Capitol.

The president and his allies quickly accused the platforms of silencing free speech.

A law expert said the First Amendment doesn’t protect Trump.

"In terms of whether they have the power to tell President Trump, ‘sorry we think you've broken our rules, you're booted off.’ They absolutely have the power to do that," said Jonathan Weinberg, professor and associate dean of research at Wayne State University Law School.

He said Twitter is well within its legal right to ban Trump from its platform. The same goes for Amazon and others who essentially shut down Parler.

"It gets to choose who it does business with and who it doesn't," Weinberg said.

He said these actions do not violate anyone's First Amendment rights.

"What the law says about your First Amendment rights run against governments,” he said. “They don't run against private companies."

Weinberg said in a twist of irony, it was Trump and Republicans who got rid of net neutrality. Weinberg said net neutrality was designed to give people more rights to prevent being silenced by powerful media companies.

"The moment President Trump got into office, the Republicans swept that all away,” he said. “They said, 'that's crazy. That's awful. That's communism. Government shouldn't be telling private companies what to do.'"

Weinberg also thinks it will be difficult to regulate big tech without infringing on its First Amendment rights.

"If we think that Facebook ought to be regulated, not only is Facebook or Twitter or any social media company, not only is the First Amendment not the tool for doing so, the First Amendment is indeed an obstacle for doing so," Weinberg said.

Copyright 2021 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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(1) comment


Anyone ever read 1984? Good book.

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