Florida is working to pass one of the toughest laws in the country that would permanently prohibit Big Tech social media companies from “deplatforming” Floridians on social media. This is reminiscent of a law that Poland recently created where they fine social media companies that censor posts of legal content. What a concept, right?
The Sunshine State’s legislature last week voted overwhelmingly to advance Senate Bill 7072 that will criminalize the banning or removal of any Florida political candidate. This amazing crackdown on tech tyrant censorship passed in the House by a 77-38 vote and in the Senate with 23-17.
According to the current version of the bill, social media platforms that violate the new law would be hit with a daily fine of $250,000 for the deplatforming of any statewide candidate for public office. The original amount was set at $100,000 in the Senate version of the legislation and was raised later by an amendment was passed by the House. The tech tyrants are filthy rich, but no one wants to pay a million dollars in fines every four days.
If social media platforms continue to remove or ban candidates, they would be hit with an additional fine of $25,000 for each political candidate that is deplatformed.
For some odd reason, the fines won’t apply to 14-day suspensions. And now you know that they will suspend Republican candidates for 14 days, free them from social media prison for a day, and then ban them again for another 14 days. The companies are run by leftists who have an activist agenda that goes beyond their stockholders.
“This bill is not about President Trump,” Republican State Representative John Snyder said to losers who trashed the bill, claiming it was nothing more than retaliation against the tech tyrants who banned the former president. “This bill is about the 22 million Floridians and their First Amendment rights.”
The Left has hidden behind the argument that censorship by the leftist tech tyrants of social media was not a violation of the First Amendment’s right to Free Speech, because the First Amendment is only for the government. Being corporations, the fascists who run Big Tech were well within their rights to censor anyone they don’t like. They have cleverly written terms of service agreements that members must agree to in order to be allowed on the platform, and they are written so that the companies can ban or censor anyone for pretty much any reason they see fit. And the punishments are arbitrary. I have been suspended on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube for things I have no idea what I did wrong. And they never tell you. They just say that you have violated their terms of service without explaining how.
“What this bill is about is sending a loud message to Silicon Valley that they are not the absolute arbiters of truth,” Republican state Representative John Snyder reportedly said on Wednesday. “What this bill does is send a loud message that the Constitution does not have an asterisk that says only certain speech is free and protected.”
Florida’s state legislature’s action to set limitations on social media tech tyrant’s censorship practices comes after Governor Ron DeSantis first mentioned the idea of imposing fines on social media companies who ban or remove political candidates during a West Palm Beach speech in February. They are interfering in elections when they do that, and we can’t have that if we’re going to at least try to save our republic.
I’m hoping that eventually the law will include regular users but for now Floridians can rely on those they want to represent them will not be banned from the public square.
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After the House added amendments to the current version of the bill, it was sent back to the Florida Senate for approval. Then, it’s off to the governor’s desk and DeSantis has indicated that he will sign it.
Rich is syndicated opinion columnist for David Harris Jr. and owner of Maga-Chat.com. He writes about politics, culture, liberty and faith.
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