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Twitter under fire for locking out conservative accounts over Rachel Levine tweets

todayMarch 24, 2022 1

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There could also be no surer solution to land in Twitter jail than to name Biden administration official Rachel Levine a person, however some fed-up conservatives are taking a stand on what they describe because the platform’s push to exchange reality with fiction.

Within the house of two days, Twitter suspended the accounts of the Babylon Bee and Turning Level USA CEO Charlie Kirk for describing the transgender assistant well being secretary as male, making them the newest in an extended line of conservatives to run afoul of the “hateful conduct” coverage with Levine-themed tweets.

The distinction is that the Bee and Mr. Kirk are refusing to delete the tweets, declaring that doing so would make them complicit in a falsehood.

“Twitter desires me to confess to a lie for saying one thing true. That I can not do,” Mr. Kirk advised The Washington Occasions in a Wednesday e-mail.

Babylon Bee CEO Seth Dillon, who mentioned that to take away the tweet can be “like asking us to say that 2 and a couple of make 5,” known as on others to affix the conservative Christian satire web site in difficult the coverage.

“We don’t consider that details are hate speech, that talking fact is hate speech,” mentioned Mr. Dillon on Fox’s “Tucker Carlson Tonight.” “In some unspecified time in the future, folks have to stay by this, Tucker. Folks need to be prepared to say, hear, if they need us to disclaim the reality with a purpose to keep on this platform, then we communicate the reality. Make them kick you off. Make them boot you.”

After Mr. Carlson posted screenshots Tuesday of the offending tweets on Twitter, he was additionally censored, in response to the Every day Caller, which the Fox host co-founded. The tweets are now not seen on his account.

Each Mr. Kirk and the Bee, which every have greater than 1 million followers, have mentioned they’ll enchantment the lockouts.

That they’d put their influential podiums in danger comes as an indication that the suitable has reached a boiling level on tech censorship in addition to the left’s marketing campaign to credit score male-born people with feminine accomplishments.

Dr. Levine, who reportedly transitioned to female in 2011 at the age of 53, was recently named one of USA Today’s 2022 Women of the Year, prompting the Babylon Bee to mock the award with the March 15 tweet, “The Babylon Bee’s Man of the Year is Rachel Levine.”

Mr. Dillon said that the tweet was “just a joke. It’s pretty harmless, and it’s certainly not hurting anybody.”

“And this is a public official,” he added. “It’s not like we’re punching down at some downtrodden person.”

Even so, Twitter reacted Sunday by suspending @theBabylonBee. The next day, Twitter froze Babylon Bee editor-in-chief Kyle Mann’s account for a tweet blasting the lockout.

His tweet: “Maybe they’ll let us back into our @theBabylonBee Twitter account if we throw a few thousand Uighurs in a concentration camp,” an apparent reference to the Chinese government accounts active on Twitter.

Twitter wasn’t finished: On Tuesday, the tech platform froze out Mr. Kirk’s @charliekirk11 account for a March 15 tweet that began, “Richard Levine spent the first 54 years of his life as a man.”

“He had a wife and a family,” said the Kirk tweet. “He ‘transitioned’ to being a woman in 2011, Joe Biden appointed Levine to be a 4-Star Admiral and now USA Today has named ‘Rachel’ Levine as a ‘Woman of the Year.’ Where are the feminists??”

Mr. Kirk did not actually call Dr. Levine a man, but did use the federal official’s “deadname,” a violation of Twitter rules.

“We took enforcement action on the accounts you referenced for violating the Twitter Rules on hateful conduct,” a Twitter spokesperson told The Washington Times. “Per the policy: ‘We prohibit targeting others with repeated slurs, tropes or other content that intends to dehumanize, degrade or reinforce negative or harmful stereotypes about a protected category. This includes targeted misgendering or deadnaming of transgender individuals.’”

In addition, the account owner “will be required to delete the violative Tweet and spend 12 hours in read-only mode before regaining full access to their account,” meaning that the accounts will remain frozen unless the offending tweet is removed.

Turning Point USA called the ban “a symptom of a growing anti-democratic climate perpetuated by Big Tech.”

“The censors at Twitter, with this latest assault on objective truth, have proven unequivocally that they don’t believe in biology — only ideology,” said Mr. Kirk in a statement, adding, “They want submission. We must not give them what they want.”

Not surprisingly, the Bee has fired back with a slew of satirical posts on the lockout. Items include “Twitter Throws Babylon Bee Into Fiery Furnace After Refusal To Worship Pride Flag,” and “Babylon Bee Writers Struggling To Come Up With New Material After Twitter Bans 1 Of Their 2 Jokes.”

The lockouts drew loads of response on social media. Some commenters mentioned that following Twitter’s guidelines is solely the worth of admission for having the ability to entry the platform, whereas others cheered the choice.

“Twitter suspends the account of notorious MAGA hack Charlie Kirk after he repeatedly misgenders U.S. assistant secretary for well being Rachel Levine and heaps transgender insults on her,” tweeted Occupy Democrats.

Inez Stepman, senior coverage analyst on the conservative Impartial Girls’s Discussion board, slammed the suspensions.

“That women and men are biologically totally different is among the most elementary and apparent truths of the human situation,” mentioned Ms. Stepman. “That stating such apparent truths leads to censorship from social media behemoths is sweet motive to query the quantity of energy they need to form discourse within the public sq..”

Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican, tweeted in response to the Babylon Bee lockout that “Twitter hates comedy. It hates the reality.”

Twitter has a document of focusing on tweets hostile to Dr. Levine, a pediatrician and the previous Pennsylvania well being secretary.

The Media Analysis Middle discovered a dozen examples of lawmakers, media retailers and others whose accounts had been flagged or frozen within the final yr for tweets about Dr. Levine’s intercourse.

They embrace accounts owned by Rep. Jim Banks, Indiana Republican; Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, Georgia Republican; Texas Legal professional Basic Ken Paxton; Catholic World Report; PJ Media, and the Every day Citizen, a Christian information outlet run by Concentrate on the Household.

PJ Media editor Paula Bolyard blasted Twitter “science deniers” for the lockout over the conservative outlet’s Oct. 19 tweet, “Rachel Levine is Not the ‘First Feminine 4-Star Admiral’ As a result of He’s a Male.’”

“They’ll maintain our account hostage till we ‘acknowledge’ the error of our methods. Each cell in [Levine’s] physique is coded with male DNA, but we’re within the improper?” requested Ms. Bolyard on her personal account.

Account homeowners have usually deleted their tweets slightly than lose entry.

Mr. Banks mentioned he eliminated his tweet to remain in communication along with his constituents, however he wasn’t blissful about it.

“Twitter demanded I delete the tweet if I needed to take part in a momentous political debate, which is my job, so I did, however I stand by each phrase in my factual assertion,” mentioned Mr. Banks in an e-mail. “Twitter supplies an important platform for elected officers to speak with voters, which is a part of what makes Twitter’s biased and arbitrary censorship so harmful.”

He misplaced entry to his official account for an Oct. 23 tweet saying the “title of first feminine four-star officer will get taken by a person,” referring to the announcement of Dr. Levine’s promotion to four-star admiral within the U.S. Public Well being Service Commissioned Corps.

Mr. Banks added Wednesday: “Preventing the left’s censorship will stay a precedence of mine for so long as I’m in Congress.”





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