The USA can no longer judge freedom of speech in other countries
Can freedom of speech be sacrificed to democracy?
The US has already done so.
There is not much good that can be learned from the American campaign race. It can rightly be considered the most controversial race in the history of the country. Politicians are not squeamish in their desire to win. While Donald Trump is supporting the right, who yearn for civil war, Joe Biden and the Democrats in the summer gave carte blanche to protest against racism, which turned into riots in the streets of American cities. While Donald Trump is unveiling a long history of the Biden family corruption, opponents of the president have said that he was evading taxes. And all this against the backdrop of an unprecedented crisis and the Coronavirus pandemic, which has already claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans.
Sometimes it is hard to believe that we are talking about the United States of America. Such a dirty election game would be appropriate in developing countries like Ukraine. But we see the world capital of democracy sinking to openly vile methods of fighting, even amending its own constitution. The first amendment to this document, which is revered by the Americans, guarantees citizens the right to freedom of speech and the press. To be more precise, it did.
Back in the spring, the US President signed a decree regulating social media. The document implied that companies “involved in censorship and political actions” would be held accountable. American analysts questioned the decree, considering it a threat to freedom of speech, which in the USA is guaranteed by the first amendment to the Constitution. But it would be wrong to turn this article into one of those that criticize Trump alone. Yes, its decision can rightly be called radical, because we are talking about pressure. On the other hand, the decision was a retaliatory measure that is persistently ignored by everyone.
First of all, Republicans have constantly stated that social networks have silenced the opinion of conservatives. Twitter blocked Donald Trump’s publications at all. On the one hand, it may seem logical. The publication violates the misinformation policy of the social network, which means it is removed, although it was done by the head of the world power. It is assumed that all such publications will be removed. At this stage, problems arise.
Above all, the rules are created exclusively by the social network, which means that it can manipulate and abuse them. Recently, Facebook and Twitter began blocking an article in the New York Post about Joe Biden’s connections to the Ukrainian company Burisma, where his son Hunter worked. Under the pretext of inaccurate information, users of social networks were prohibited from publishing a link to The Post article. But does no one notice that the system works unilaterally? Or does the pro-democracy media never abuse information resources? Of course they do not. During the notorious Russian intervention scandal, they did not miss a single opportunity to criticize Trump. As we know now, many of the accusations had no solid evidence. But where was the punitive mechanism of social networks then?
We constantly hear that Trump’s publications are blocked for misinformation or marked as unconfirmed. And this is not at all a concern for impressionable users who are willing to believe the president. Caring is a cover for a banal political tool. It is capable of turning a person into a liar. This is a great anti-advertisement when it comes to Trump. But in the broad sense, this system is a violation of freedom of speech. It is not just Trump who lives in the USA, and Trump is not the only one who uses social media. What’s more, social networks were created precisely so that people could express their opinions. Now this fact burdens a very large “BUT”, which
deprives users of freedom of speech. If a publication appears to be “wrong” to someone, it will simply be blocked.
Certainly, some statements should indeed be blocked. Only Facebook was in no hurry to react for some reason when American far-right groups used a social network to join their ranks. The radicals from Kenosha also used Facebook. On the social network, they were spreading calls for riots. The neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville on 12 August 2017, which resulted in a murder, was also collected on Facebook.
Back in February 2020, the report of the Network Infection Research Institute showed an increase in extremist rhetoric in the American segment of Facebook. Radicals, in particular, have called for massacres of law enforcement officers.The problem is that the American ruling elites have politicized social networks. Mark Zuckerberg’s child is a great way to create the right scenery, leaving only the “right” publications. From a legal point of view, this does not violate the first amendment, which states that “Congress shall not issue any law” restricting freedom of speech or the press. At the same time, thoughts defined by someone as unwanted will simply not be heard.It is ironic that, in matters of publicity, the United States has held an unspoken position for many years. American human rights activists have regularly criticized other governments for abusing censorship. Special attention has always been paid to Russia and China. But the presidential election allowed the masks of democracy advocates to be ripped off, showing that for the American elites, media is as much a tool as for Vladimir Putin or Xi Jinping. Unfortunately, the line between what is commonly considered totalitarian and what is called democratic methods is too thin.