President Trump lashed out at Twitter and other big tech companies on Thursday, calling for the elimination of Section 230, a portion of US code that affords protections to online media platforms against certain kinds of lawsuits.
Conservative lawmakers have raised concerns in recent months that tech companies, especially social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Youtube, are unfairly hiding behind the Section 230 protections while using their power to censor opposing opinions.
Trump tweeted late Thursday night, “for purposes of National Security, Section 230 must be immediately terminated!!!” The president did not provide any further clarification as to what his particular national security concerns were.
Section 230 allows media platforms to avoid being held liable for the independent content published on their sites. However, many have accused these platforms of acting more like publishers due to the censoring of content and curation of typically left-leaning narratives — and thus not eligible for Section 230’s protections.
Twitter, which has become the center of political discourse, has interfered heavily in the election cycle, harshly censoring President Trump and his supporters as Democrats face little pushback despite evidence of election irregularities.
Most recently, Twitter blocked users from sharing a link to attorney Sidney Powell’s website which contains information about a new lawsuit with major new voter fraud accusations.
Information is no longer allowed to be freely shared on Twitter, making it less of an information-exchanging platform and much more of a traditional publisher like the Washington Post or the New York Times.
Conservative radio host Dennis Prager chimed in on the controversy on Friday morning during an appearance on Fox & Friends, calling Twitter “thuggish” in its censorship of dissenting opinions.
“Twitter is the worst. Twitter is thuggish,” Prager declared, pointing to the media takedown of hydroxychloroquine — a controversial COVID-19 therapy touted by Trump — as an example.
“And do you know that Twitter takes down doctors, epidemiologists, other scientists who simply say hydroxychloroquine might work?” Prager continued. “That is enough to be removed from Twitter, to have your account closed down, if you are a doctor. This is a lie, by the way, like everything else that comes from the left. I never talk about liberals. I’m talking about the left. Truth is not a value to them. They don’t follow the science. They follow scientists with whom they agree. It’s a very important distinction. The left does not follow science. So that if thousands of scientists like the Great Barrington Declaration … said the lockdown is a catastrophe, it’s not even reported. And if you do report it, Twitter will take you down.”