Is this tyranny, a badge of honor, or both?
Do you think the irony of that quote was lost on the fact-checkers?
A Google search demonstrates that Jase’s attribution of the quote is up for debate. Other sites, like Goodreads.com, attribute it to the Roman historian Tacitus, some to George Orwell, most recently it was credited to a 1993 radio broadcast by Kevin Alfred Strom, while others say Voltaire's actual quote was, "If you want to know who rules over you, just look for who you are not allowed to criticize.”
Still, the irony of fact-checkers blocking a quote that multiple sites credit some version of to a variety of speakers – including Voltaire - would be funny, if it weren't pathetic.
But it’s not.
In case we need reminding, free speech is still a right.
Except if you’re Big Tech or a disinformation fact-checker.
Then free speech for you is all wrong.
But because we, the people, understand that our rights do not come from man but God, we also know that they can’t be taken away. Not that easily.
The good news? Though we’re in the fight of our lives so that we can freely continue to say what we mean and mean what we say, many of us are wide awake.
Many of us refuse to operate under Omerta, the Italian word that means a strict code of silence.
According to Bill O’Reilly in his book, Killing the Mob, the mafia successfully enforced that code.
And if Big Tech and our government have their way, they will too.
They’d rather have our silence and complicity on anything they deem disinformation, misinformation, or just plain wrong.
But who are they to say that anyway? Who gave them that right?
Why won’t they answer that question? Because “trust us, we’re the experts,” doesn’t work.
Doesn’t Big Tech, and our government, know that they give us pause when they say crazy things like this?
“Trust us, we won’t be weaponizing this against Americans — our approach to policing disinformation will be ‘politically neutral,’” insists the employee of an administration that has routinely labeled inconvenient but factual news reports as “disinformation” and is openly working with social media platforms to censor content it deems as such.
“Your civil liberties are safe with us,” says the White House, who threatened to sic the feds on parents who protested at school board meetings.
Sure. I trust them. Do you?
Do you know what else is ridiculous? It’s that they don’t realize what they’re doing.
Every time the fact-checkers start with their “let us protect you” narrative or let us step in front of these foolish ideas, like this quote from Facebook, they tell us something.
When they attempt to shield our eyes or do our thinking for us, they tell us that we’re powerful beyond measure.
They also tell us this:
“Another driving force behind the growth of the fact-checking complex is the necessity of enforcing loyalty to progressive ideas that can’t survive on their own.”
In many cases, we’re not canceled - or our social media posts are labeled as misinformation - because they’re wrong but because they’re right.
Look at the tattered landscape Big Tech, and their fact-checkers, have created.
Instead of deep thought and rigorous debate - well, that sort of thing isn’t tolerated anymore, is it?
It seems they’ve single-handedly ushered in an age of, 'Don’t discuss it; dismiss it.'
Don’t address the idea or defend the thought. Instead, distract. Distract. Distract.
Then defeat, and destroy.
Don’t like adverse COVID vaccine reactions?
Pretend it’s not happening. But certainly don’t discuss it. And ignore authentic problems with the vaccine and kids. Yes. Because there’s nothing to see here, folks. Instead, let’s go after doctors’ medical licenses because they dared to think differently.
Don’t like what’s going on in education?
Silence the parents, bring in drag queens for story hour, but whatever you do, don’t address why our test scores are low and why too many kids can’t read. And for fun, let’s harass parents at school board meetings. Let’s call them terrorists.
Don’t like abortion?
They demean anyone who disagrees with them. They make sure the world thinks pro-lifers hate women. And then they show up on Supreme Court Justices' lawns with a gun to threaten them.
No. None of that is weaponized.
Indeed, that’s just political neutrality at its finest.
There is a bright and shining light.
Every time Big Tech and their foolish sensors remove a post, claim disinformation, or ban someone from the socials, they demonstrate that they are afraid of us.
For that reason, we must continue to stand.
Though they expect us to squirm in fear.
Our freedom is too sweet a song to be snuffed out by fools.
“The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out for himself, without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane, and intolerable...” ― H.L. Mencken, Prejudices: Third Series
Amie Beth Shaver is a speaker, writer, and media commentator. Her column appears every Wednesday in 1819 News. Shaver served on the Alabama GOP State Executive Committee, was a candidate for State House District 43 and spokeswoman for Allied Women. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to Commentary@1819News.com.
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