Home / Blog / Article


August 9 2018

Twitter Bans Conservative Author for Supporting Free Speech

by Charlotte Hays

Joining a host of other conservatives, author and editor Elizabeth Kantor has been deplatformed from twitter . . . for a tweet that opposed deplatforming.

Ironically, Elizabeth also was defending New York Times editorial writer Sarah Jeong's right to free speech.

Many have been calling for Jeong to be fired in light of her tweets reflecting hostility towards whites.

Here is Elizabeth's banned tweet:

@sarahjeong This whitey is cheering you on as you fight off the Twitter mob. Down with deplatforming! Plus, it’s clarifying abt. what kind of paper the NYT wants to be . . .” 5:24 AM – 3 Aug 2018.

I agree with Elizabeth that it was not a harsh tweet, especially in light of Ms. Jeong's “#CancelWhitePeople” tweet. But Elizabeth was banned, apparently having violated Twitter's rules against "hateful conduct."

Twitter isn't government owned. It is a private enterprise. Therefore, my first impulse  is to say, let them ban whomever they please. Even if it is a super writer and careful thinker such as Elizabeth Kantor.

However, given that The Disappeared are mostly conservatives and that this silences their ideas under the bizarre rubic of "hatred," I am beginning to worry.

Also worrying: Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy pretty much represents a Democratic mainstream when he says that “the survival of our democracy" depends on" Twitter banning  hateful (often defined as conservative) ideas.  

Here is Elizabeth's takeaway, as described at The Federalist:

I have always had my doubts about trust-busting, but it may be time to consider regulating these huge social media corporations as public utilities. As John Zmirak, a fellow Regnery author whose books I have been privileged to edit, points out, if Ma Bell had behaved like this when the telephone was invented, the phone company would have been listening in to all our calls and cutting off conservatives’ phone service for “hate speech.”

My stand in defense of even hateful speech was inspired by the venerable free speech tradition in Western civilization and specifically Anglo-American culture—expressed in such classics as Milton’s Areopagitica—which I explored in “The Politically Incorrect Guide to English and American Literature,” demonstrating how free speech is a core value of Christian civilization.

While the notice from Twitter announced, “We’ve temporarily limited some of your account features” and gave the suspension time as “12 hours 0 minutes,” the fine print says, “You can start your countdown and continue to Twitter once you: “Delete Tweets that violate our rules.”

That makes it a permanent ban unless I am willing to delete the tweet or can convince Twitter they have made a mistake. In other words, I am banned from their platform unless I cave to their censorship. I will be submitting an appeal of my ban to the faceless Twitter authorities behind the algorithms.

Elizabeth regards the banning of conservatives as an example of the attempt to prevent conservatives from being heard in the public square in the run-up to the 2018 election (and I predict it will get worse before the 2020 presidential race).

Hard to disagree with that.

 

Independent Women's Forum is an educational 501(c)(3) dedicated to developing and advancing policies that aren’t just well intended, but actually enhance people’s freedom, choices, and opportunities. IWF is the sister organization of the Independent Women’s Voice.​
Follow us