Tech tyrants elevate Biden to 'Dear Leader' status, with criticism forbidden
Shana Chappell, whose son, U.S. Marine and lance corporal Kareem Nikoui, was murdered in Afghanistan thanks to the Biden administration's fecklessness, took to social media to say exactly what she thought of Biden, including questioning the legitimacy of his presidency. It was classic free speech of the type the First Amendment protects...so Instagram (which Facebook owns) suspended her. It later reinstated her, assuring that it was all a mistake when we all know that the only mistake was that Facebook/Instagram got caught. The mere fact that Facebook/Instagram took this step — and thought it could get away with it — is a perfect example of the fact that the tech tyrants are functioning in the same way as North Korean censors, banning any speech critical of the "Dear Leader" and his policies.
Kareem Nikoui was a young man who wanted to serve his country, and his family was proud of him for that. Had he died in battle at Bagram Air Force Base defending American interests, they would have wept for his loss but consoled themselves with the thought that he died for the greater good.
Thanks to the Biden administration's criminally bungled withdrawal from Afghanistan, though, Kareem Nikoui did not die serving his country. Instead, he was murdered because the Biden administration, having deliberately handed Kabul over to the Taliban, made the Taliban — America's enemy — responsible for security around the Kabul airport:
In a hastily arranged in-person meeting, senior U.S. military leaders in Doha — including McKenzie, the commander of U.S. Central Command — spoke with Abdul Ghani Baradar. "We have a problem," Baradar said, according to the U.S. official. "We have two options to deal with it: You [the United States military] take responsibility for securing Kabul or you have to allow us to do it."
Throughout the day, Biden had remained resolute in his decision to withdraw all American troops from Afghanistan. The collapse of the Afghan government hadn't changed his mind. McKenzie, aware of those orders, told Baradar that the U.S. mission was only to evacuate American citizens, Afghan allies and others at risk. The United States, he told Baradar, needed the airport to do that.
On the spot, an understanding was reached, according to two other U.S. officials: The United States could have the airport until Aug. 31. But the Taliban would control the city.
Shana Chappell cannot get over the fact that her beloved son died only because the Biden administration was so incompetent that it couldn't even get the basics of the withdrawal right. And because Chappell knows that a fish rots from the head, she took to social media to blast Biden and the corrupt election he rode in on:
Although Chappell describes Biden in raw language and questions his legitimacy, nothing she says is illegal. Everything falls squarely within the parameters of the First Amendment, protecting speech about politics.
Instagram has since reinstated Chappell's account, saying the suspension was in error, but thinking people assume that it did so because of the outcry. If it could have gotten away with it, it would have.
The tech tyrants invited Americans onto their platforms with the promise that they could freely express themselves as long as they avoided using the platform for illegal purposes. Americans enthusiastically embraced what they thought were free speech forums. The social media platforms' popularity turned them into the public square, for they became the main forum of all speech in America. Having corralled all Americans into an artificially created public square, the same tech tyrants are systematically destroying America's First Amendment rights.
Theoretically, we can back out to communication as it existed before the rise of the internet, sending mail through the United States Post Office and phoning people — except there's reason not to trust the post office, and people are discovering that they have no control over their cell phones, which have supplanted landlines. As for internet sites, such as blogs, websites survived before social media through blog rolls and word of mouth, and they can do that again (although the possibility that servers hosting a website will dump it, as Amazon did to Parler, remains).
What irks people is that they shouldn't have to return to 20th-century communication. Instead, the government should revisit section 230, the piece of legislation that protects internet sites from liability. Currently, although these internet sites actively control the content on their site — acting as editors — they still claim protection under section 230, which was intended to apply only to sites that functioned as bulletin boards, without control over the content. Liability might rein in the tech tyrants' abuses.
Until then, a grieving mother will find herself systematically silenced because she committed an act that is a crime in both North Korea and Silicon Valley — criticizing the Dear Leader.
Image: Shana Chappell and her son, Kareem Nikoui. Facebook.
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