If it were up to the liberals, they would simply ban anything and anyone that they don’t like. If there’s a disagreement between parties, the liberals would prefer to simply ban one side so that they don’t have to listen, compromise, or even show tolerance.
Now, Ron DeSantis, the Republican Governor of Florida, is about to put an end to that.
How about a ban on bans?
At least when it comes to social media within the state, he plans to put an end to the meaningless bans that seem to happen. Especially around election time, the liberals get louder – and the bans become more ridiculous.
It’s hard to fight fair when the Democratic Party has the social media platforms on its side. However, where there’s a will, there’s a way.
What is free speech? Well, DeSantis will be putting it to the test. He has signed a law that will restrict social media companies’ ability to ban candidates for state office.
Florida Senate Bill 7072 identifies that tech and social companies are going to be limited in regard to how they handle several things.
Candidates running for state office cannot be banned or deprioritized.
News outlets cannot be banned or deprioritized.
There must be transparency from the platforms regarding moderation processes.
Individual users and the state will have the right to sue any social media platform that violates the law.
Is this legal? Maybe, maybe not. Many are already questioning how easily it will be to monitor such a thing. If a candidate says that they’re being deprioritized, it can be difficult to prove. Various lawyers are already saying that it could be challenged in court as being unconstitutional as well as a direct challenge to federal rules.
The law is trying to tackle censorship. Shouldn’t candidates and news outlets be able to exercise their First Amendment rights without being censored by social media? This has been an ongoing battle. And since the Biden administration doesn’t want to tackle it, DeSantis figures he’ll at least tackle it for his state.
“Free speech” may be interpreted very differently. And social media functions differently than newspapers and book publishers – which is why it’s hard to use the First Amendment as an argument.
Some argue that DeSantis is crossing a line because the government cannot interfere with speech. If a platform wants to ban a person, a story, or a post, they have the ability to do so – for the same First Amendment reasons.
There’s a federal law, Section 230, that protects companies (including ones like Twitter and Facebook) from being liable for the content they publish. Does that mean that social media platforms are publishers? Well, in a way, they are.
What DeSantis is doing is noble. He’s recognized that there’s a problem. And, he’s determined to tackle it. Unfortunately, he may not be able to do it. As a governor, he’s only limited to power within his state.
The problem he wants to tackle ahs to be conquered at the federal label.
Section 230 has a significant amount of gray area. Who are they protecting from? Well, DeSantis and the rest of the state government claim that it protects Floridians from “Silicon Valley elites.”
There are lots of loopholes – and Disney and Comcast have already found them since there are exemptions that are given to a corporation “that owns and operates a theme park or entertainment complex” of a certain size.
This looks like it’s going to be a dangerous loophole – and one that might end in Facebook or Twitter trying to buy a theme park.
Realistically, though, DeSantis is making an important move. If he can get other states on board with creating similar laws, it may force the federal government to make some serious changes. It may be the only way to truly and effectively protect our First Amendment rights to post what we want where we want.