(TruthandLiberty.com) – Censorship is nothing new. In 1798, President John Adams signed the Sedition Act into law, creating the first test of government power to limit freedom of speech. The law allowed the executive branch to deport, fine, or jail anyone it believed published false or malicious writings against the US government. After massive outrage, President Thomas Jefferson revoked the controversial law. Despite precedents set by Adams and Jefferson, attempts at censorship continue to make the headlines to this day.
On Thursday, April 21, former President Barack Obama came out swinging. He embraced a unique role in promoting censorship on social media and expressed regret he didn’t do more to stop misinformation during his administration.
Obama Expresses Regret He Didn’t Push for Censorship in 2016 Election
At Stanford University, Obama spoke about what he saw as the dangers of misinformation. While the former president said he recognized Russia’s use of disinformation on social media during the 2016 presidential election, he didn’t realize how vulnerable the country was to lies and conspiracy theories. Playing the victim card, Obama said he, too, suffered due to disinformation campaigns.
Obama stated disinformation campaigns on social media harmed democracy and democratic institutions. At the forefront of the campaign, Obama blamed Russian President Vladimir Putin and former Trump adviser Steve Bannon without providing specific examples of how they contributed. The former president also targeted former President Donald Trump and his supporters for claiming election fraud in the 2020 presidential election.
Obama added Russia didn’t need to meddle and spread disinformation because we did it ourselves — and he expressed regret for failing to see the scope of the issue and do anything about it.
Obama Speaks Repeatedly About His Support for Censorship
In March, Obama spoke at an event hosted by the University of Chicago and the Atlantic. He said openly and without hesitation that he believes social media companies should be regulated and allowed to censor disinformation the government believes isn’t good for society.
Censorship on that level leads to First Amendment questions and ruins the fourth estate’s and social media’s credibility. For example, in October 2020, the New York Post broke the story about Hunter Biden’s laptop, including potential shady business dealings that implicated Joe Biden and officials in China, Russia, and Ukraine. Social media labeled the news as misinformation and disinformation, only for credible sources to admit the contents on the laptop were real 18 months later.
So, who decides to censor what and when, and why? Isn’t America more likely in bigger trouble if Obama, or anyone, regardless of party or affiliation, were to become the censorship king? What do you think?
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