(Natural News) A federal judge has granted Texas a huge win in a major “free speech” case against Big Tech, ruling that the Lone Star State can seek files regarding content moderation from Twitter and Facebook.
Bloomberg News reported that Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, a Republican, will be permitted to seek limited discovery from the Big Tech behemoths in due course.
“The ruling allows Paxton to seek documents and depose employees at members of NetChoice and Computer & Communications Industry Association — but only if they’ll be impacted by the law barring platforms from suspending users over their political views. The statute, which applies to social-media companies with more than 50 million monthly users, takes effect Dec. 2,” the outlet reported.
Texas sued a number of tech companies over the “free speech” statute.
“Texas passed a law prohibiting Facebook, Twitter & Google from removing conservative viewpoints,” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted. “They sued us. Now, a federal judge will let Texas seek internal documents about how they moderate content. It’s about to get interesting.”
Texas passed a law prohibiting Facebook, Twitter & Google from removing conservative viewpoints.
They sued us.
Now, a federal judge will let Texas seek internal documents about how they moderate content.
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) October 23, 2021
Last month, three social media behemoths — Facebook, Google’s YouTube, and Twitter — filed suit against Texas in a bid to stop the law from taking effect, with USA Today adding:
The lawsuit filed in federal court Wednesday challenges the law signed earlier this month by Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott that would allow any state resident banned from a social media platform for their political views to sue.
Texas lawmakers were motivated in large part by the suspensions of former President Donald Trump after the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.
“At a minimum, H.B. 20 would unconstitutionally require platforms like YouTube and Facebook to disseminate, for example, pro-Nazi speech, terrorist propaganda, foreign government disinformation, and medical misinformation,” the lawsuit alleges.
Also, the new state law “will work to chill the exercise of platforms’ First Amendment rights to exercise their own editorial discretion and to be free from state-compelled speech,” it said.
For one thing, our founders wrote the First Amendment specifically with the intent of keeping the government out of regulating speech, but the intent also was that other entities would also be prevented from limiting or regulating speech. The founders, of course, could never have envisioned “social media” but that is the genius behind an amendment guaranteeing Americans the right to speak and express themselves freely: It applies to all communications methods.
Secondly, the founders, better than anyone, understood unpopular speech; after all, they were stumping against King George and the Crown, which was forbidden and certainly not “popular” among all colonists at the time. No one in their right mind supports the Nazi ideology or mindset, but preventing someone from espousing it is exactly what the First Amendment sought to ban. Now, conservative speech is being suppressed because our opponents get to claim we are ‘Nazis’ when it is clear we are not.
Ditto for ‘medical misinformation.’ All of these social media behemoths have banned or censored scientifically valid evidence regarding the COVID-19 vaccine simply because it differs from the “accepted” science: All vaccines are good and effective; vaccine mandates are ‘science’; kids must be vaccinated because ‘science’; and so on. It simply is an arbitrary decision by the platforms to declare what is and is not “medical misinformation.”
And ‘foreign government misinformation’? What about U.S. government misinformation? The Biden regime is literally incapable of telling the truth and yet no one from this administration is banned or censored on those platforms, while nearly everyone from the Trump administration was (and Trump himself was kicked off after the lie that he ‘incited’ the Jan. 6 ‘insurrection’).
What about the fact that all of these platforms allowed fake news about Trump’s non-existent ‘collusion with Russia’ to be posted for years? Even after it was proven time and again that the allegations were fake?
Our founders did not bequeath us ambiguous definitions of our guaranteed rights. Texas should win this case if we have judges ruling on its constitutionality, not with political considerations.