Now, I actually had a different topic picked out for this week, but something happened to me a few days ago and it’s happening to Christians and conservatives all over the country every single day. What happened to me? Well, last week’s podcast entitled “Abortion: an American Holocaust” was censored by the leftists at Youtube.
turn to god when you’re persecuted
Initially, I felt outraged by this censorship. In retrospect, that was my first mistake. I should have immediately gone to the Lord in prayer. The second thing I should have done was open up His Word. It was only a few days after the incident, that I came upon this verse from Psalms: “Oh Lord, oppose those who oppose me. Fight against those who fight against me.” I was quickly convicted and repented of several sins namely the sin of pride. Rather than go to the Lord in prayer or open his Word, I went to my husband who recommended a sound solution, but that’s not the point. I was reminded by Scripture that God fights for those who are His. It was a lesson I won’t soon forget.
i was censored on youtube
Back to my story of Youtube censorship. The only thing I was told by Youtube was that the content of my podcast was found to be “inappropriate and offensive” by some viewers. Hmmm…strange. Planned Parenthood talks about abortion all the time, and they don’t get censored. In addition, all the clips I used in my podcast came straight from Youtube and are still on its site. So, what exactly was inappropriate and offensive? Personally, I find abortion to be inappropriate and offensive.
And, who were these viewers. I checked my stats and no one had heard my podcast on Youtube, which means Youtube blatantly lied about the reason for censoring my podcast. After discussing the issue with my husband, I quickly deleted my podcast, changed the title and description, and re-uploaded it. We’ll see if Youtube censors this latest version.
voltaire’s philosophy on speech
Evelyn Beatrice Hall, writing about Voltaire under the pen name Tallentyre, made use of a phrase which she said encapsulated Voltaire’s philosophy. I’m sure you’ll recognize it. “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to death your right to say it.” As a history/government teacher, I often quoted that phrase to students, and would use the example of a neo-Nazi demonstration and parade. I would tell students, “Look, it may be repugnant, and we may not agree at all with these people, but under our first amendment, these people have the right to say whatever they want.”
I made that point up until about ten years ago. According to the American Bar Association, “hate speech” is still protected under the first amendment of our Constitution. Maybe, but the term “hate speech” as well as all sorts of young people feeling “triggered” by certain words and phrases led me to drop that portion of my discussion on free speech in the US, which leads me directly into my next point: the weakening of the first amendment right of free speech on college campuses.
college campuses perfect freedom “from” speech
Let’s take a quick look at the trend toward freedom from speech, rather than freedom of speech. Although Western Civilization and culture has always stood for freedom of speech as a right, college and university students are being taught they should be free from speech they dislike, speech that makes them uncomfortable, speech they don’t agree with, or speech they term hateful.
US universities seem to be taking their cue from Europe where, under the umbrella of sensitivity, Europeans ban hateful and hurtful speech as well as speech critical of religions, especially speech critical of Islam. Currently, US campuses employ political correctness, speech codes, and tiny free speech zones to curtail real freedom of speech.
no constitutions on constitution day?
For example, and this one is going to kill you, in 2013 at Modesto Junior College in California Robert Van Tuinen, a student who also happened to be a military veteran tried to hand out pocket Constitutions to students on Constitution Day. He was quickly banned from doing so. The reason? He was supposed to do this in the miniscule free speech zone on the campus. And, he had to ask permission to use the free speech zone five days in advance. To add insult to injury, each student cannot monopolize the free speech zone. They can only use it a total of eight hours in one semester. Well, that’s generous.
This was unacceptable to Robert, so he sued the college. With the assistance of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) and a Washington DC law firm, Robert won his lawsuit. He was paid $50,000 and the college promised to reform its policies. This is what it takes these days, folks. You have to be willing to fight and possibly sue to keep your Constitutional rights.
John Adams, one of our founding fathers and the second President of the United States, probably rolled over in his grave at Robert Van Tuinen’s treatment by Modesto Junior College officials. In a letter to Thomas Jefferson on June 28, 1813, Adams stated, “The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity. I will avow that I then believed, and now believe, that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God.” In other words, the Constitution is based on the Biblical principles of freedom for all. God created every human with free will to do good or evil. Van Tuinen was doing something good that day with his God-given freedom. It’s too bad it took a lawsuit to get Modesto Junior College to affirm that concept.
disinvitation season on college campuses
So, what else are our kids learning at college? Well, ever heard of “disinvitation season”? No? It actually is not a season; it lasts the entire college year, and basically it is a protest and process by which professors and students get a conservative speaker disinvited from speaking at their university. Although used before, this tactic intensified starting in 2009 and continues unabated today.
Those disinvited have included speakers like former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Islam critic Ayaan Hirsi Ali, conservative radio host Ben Shapiro, conservative author Anne Coulter, and conservative activist and former Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos. In fact, let’s listen to a report on an anti-Milo protest at Berkeley University prior to Yiannopoulos speaking to a college Republican group.
You know I never cease to be amazed by these leftist thugs. Did you catch what one young woman said? She pontificated that the students would not tolerate racism, sexism, hate crimes, violence, fascism. Boy that’s a mouthful, but does this student understand the irony of her words? These college students are protesting violence by using violence. And, frankly, I don’t believe any of these young people know the meaning of fascism. Although part of the definition of fascism regards authoritarian rule, the other qualifier is that it uses forcible suppression of its opposition. That’s exactly what these college students and professors are doing to conservatives, forcibly suppressing them from speaking.
Okay, we’ve gone from free speech zones, to free speech codes, to disinvitation season. Now let’s tackle trigger warnings. These are actual alerts that warn students they are about to hear or read something that may trigger a negative emotional response. Call me crazy, but isn’t that what great works of literature, great orators, and great movies do? They try to elicit an emotional response, positive or negative, from their audience.
Questioning whether this is actually happening? Question no more. In 2014, the New York Times ran an article about a Rutgers student who requested a trigger warning for The Great Gatsby. Wait…what? Yep, you heard correctly. The student claimed that some scenes of the book referenced “abusive, misogynistic violence.” Her words folks. And, recently Oberlin College tried to institute a policy of having professors stick to safe topics for discussion, or put trigger warnings on any topic which might make students feel unsafe. Glad you’re spending all that money sending little Johnny to get an education?
It is no wonder that many people have labeled young people today with the moniker, snowflakes. With college policies like trigger warnings and the disinviting of conservative speakers, students never hear anything that doesn’t conform with their feelings and beliefs, so they don’t know how to defend their positions. In fact, they seem to melt at words and ideals that don’t match their own. That’s why they so often resort to name calling. You know you’ve won the argument with a liberal when they begin to name call. Rather than being offended, take it as a compliment!
We don’t care what you want to say!
This next example involves a liberal professor at Evergreen College in Washington state who dared to disagree with the student population regarding a tradition of having one day without any white person on campus. It’s called the Day of Absence. The professor, Brett Weinstein, refused to leave the building because he called it forced segregation. That led to this exchange. This is a long video. Two and a half or three minutes will give you a flavor of students run amok. There are also some expletives which I edited out of my podcast, but not possible here.
I have to give this professor an A for his patience with these students. He is trying to let them speak, but wants a chance to speak as well. One girl, as you heard, said to him, “We don’t care what you want to speak on.” Then of course they throw around the phrase “white privilege.” After that it gets out of control. He asks if they want to hear his answer and they say no using expletives.
So, a mob of angry students demanding their way using curse words and vulgarities now passes for rational debate and discussion. After the Day of Absence, both Brett and his wife, another professor on campus, received constant threats from students. Mr. Weinstein and his wife sued Evergreen College for $3.8 million. The suit stated the school had created a hostile work environment and failed to provide for the safety of Weinstein and his wife. Evergreen settled for $500,000 and the Weinsteins resigned their positions. What these fascistic students did to Professor Weinstein and his wife is deplorable, but not surprising given what students are being taught at these universities today.
A crying closet?
Think you’ve heard it all? You haven’t. Our college aged kids are so fragile that at the University of Utah, students can now make use of a “cry closet.” Yes, you heard that right. If students have heard something offensive or they’ve been triggered by a literary classic, they can use the cry closet for ten minutes. The closet even comes equipped with a variety of stuffed animals for maximum comfort. And you thought your kids had grown up. The inmates are running the asylum folks, and soon they’ll be running businesses and our country.
AOC: A product of what our universities are producing
Wait, that might already be happening a’la Alexandria Ocasio Cortez. Her New Green Deal was laughable. I remarked to my husband that it sounded like a paper one of my high school students might have written. Very simplistic and unrealistic. But remember, these young people have never had their views questioned, and when they do they can’t defend themselves; that’s why after it was ridiculed extensively, AOC pulled it from her congressional website. (By the way, you can check it out in its entirety on the resource page at bethelightdaily.com.) I just pray we don’t have another war. I don’t think we’ll have anyone willing or able to fight for our ideals.
censorship at high schools is alive & well
I think I’ll take this opportunity to let you know suppression of free speech isn’t just happening at universities; it’s also occurring in middle and high schools. During the 2014-15 school year, I made the decision to retire. Although I had taught 34 years, I was intending to continue for another two years, that is until the following incident transpired.
I was the advisor for a young conservative club called Young Americans for Freedom at our high school. It is a national organization, so they provide many things for local clubs like posters and flyers. This was the very beginning of the year and we were nearing the 9-11 anniversary. As such, they sent our club six posters to put up around our building dealing with 9-11. All the posters had the phrase “9-11 & Never Forget” printed in the middle, and images from the 9-11 attack as well as other terrorist attacks surrounded the phrase.
The student president took one of the posters to an administrator and asked permission to post them around the school. He agreed the posters were fine. Those posters stayed up exactly four hours. Apparently, one teacher found the sentiment and the images offensive and ripped one poster off the wall, stormed into another administrator’s office complaining, and I was emailed a directive to remove all posters.
I was used to being treated like that and so were my conservative students. In fact, one teacher ridiculed the students in the Young Americans for Freedom club in front of all his classes. I called him out on it, and to be fair, he did apologize, but why did he feel free to do so in the first place? Because like all liberals they assume everyone agrees with their liberal views. Their views are, after all, the views of “intelligent and rational” people. Liberals see conservatives as either dumb rednecks or evil Nazis.
I was all set to take the posters down, but something inside me said, “Not this time.” I marched down to the office and tried to get in touch with one of five administrators in our building, but they were all tied up in a meeting. I left the school at the end of the day demoralized. As I made my way to the parking lot, a teacher aide, whose daughter was in the club, pulled up in her car, and I explained what had happened. She is a Christian and a conservative and she was outraged. I didn’t know what she was going to do, but I found out by seven that evening. She had posted what happened to our club regarding the posters on her Facebook page. People were rightly incensed and began calling the school district.
I received an email that evening from my principal asking me to come to his office at 7:15 the following day. I knew I had done nothing wrong, but nevertheless, I was a little frightened. I got to work by 6:30 am and prayed. I asked God to guide my words and to give me courage. I remembered a verse from the Bible which tells us, “So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord Your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you or abandon you.”
Oh, and as a side note, I didn’t have union representation because I had opted out of the union due to their far left stances on everything. So, I grabbed a good male friend of mine, handed him a yellow tablet, and asked him if he would take notes during the meeting. He agreed and off we went.
When I arrived at the principal’s office, the blinds were drawn so I knocked on the door. He asked me to come in, so I proceeded. To my surprise, the principal was not the only person in attendance. All five male administrators in a variety of colored shirts with ties were staring back at me. Usually, my knees would have weakened, but the Lord did indeed give me strength and courage. I was asked to explain how this “poster thing” got blown up on the Internet. I claimed ignorance as I did not do it, and I did not know the teacher aide was going to post about the event.
When asked if I understood why these posters were “inappropriate” for high school, I said I did not understand because all of the images could be found in a US history textbook. Ah, but didn’t I understand that those images should be clarified and interpreted by a teacher to help students comprehend what they were seeing? No, I responded. I thought our mission statement said we were trying to create lifelong learners, not students who could regurgitate what a teacher said. I felt comfortable that students would see the words “9-11, Never Forget” along with the images surrounding the words and make sense of the posters.
The principal went on to bemoan the fact that he would be fielding calls all day. He had even received a call from Australia! In fact, the local paper ran a story about our club and the removal of the posters. That night I went home and told my husband I was retiring at the end of the school year. Thirty four years of dealing with liberal teachers and administrators was enough for me. No longer would I have to bite my tongue to avoid heated political debates with colleagues.
My retirement from teaching was three and a half years ago, and I naively assumed that would be the end of my being censored. That was wishful thinking. As I said earlier in the show, now I have to worry about high tech censorship, and I’m not alone. Let’s take a look at a few well published cases.
big tech companies try to influence conservative campaigns
Much has been made in the last two years of so-called Russian influence in our Presidential election of 2016 by a few actors whose purpose, it was said, was to create discord in our elections. If you’ll recall, the news media told us these actors bought $100,000 worth of ads on Facebook, and according to a spokesperson from Facebook, “the ads…appeared to focus on amplifying divisive social and political messages from across the ideological spectrum…” So basically it’s alleged these Russian operatives created ads that were pro-conservative and pro-liberal as well as anti-conservative and anti-liberal just to stir things up.
If it was actually true, no American should cheer this type of influence in our election, although in the world of politics, $100,000 worth of ads is chump change. But, remember, the news account said these were Russians trying to influence our election, not Americans. Unfortunately, however, several American tech companies, owned by leftists have been caught trying to influence the outcome of numerous conservative campaigns.
One such campaign was that of Marsha Blackburn’s while she was running for a vacant senate seat in Tennessee. A non-profit organization, Susan B. Anthony List, which seeks to promote pro-life candidates, had created an ad endorsing Marsha Blackburn and castigating her Democrat opponent for his pro-abortion stance. The ad was set to air one week prior to the 2018 election. Unfortunately, Facebook chose to censor the ad by not running it. Thankfully, Marsha Blackburn is a well-known public figure and was interviewed several times about the incident. Soon after, Facebook reversed course explaining it was all a mistake; the ad never should have been disapproved and they restored it.
I don’t know about you, but I’m not buying the “it was a mistake” defense. Oh, and by the way, Ms.Blackburn had previously been censored by Twitter when they banned a different pro-life ad of hers on their site. Blessedly, today we can call Marsha Blackburn senator because she won her seat for the Senate, no thanks to Twitter and Facebook.
Now, let’s see what happens when a conservative candidate, a neophyte to politics from a very blue state, tries to run a campaign ad on Facebook. Elizabeth Heng was a candidate for Congress in 2018. She ran a campaign ad on Facebook highlighting her Asian roots and her parents horrific struggles under Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge who killed between 1.5 and 3 million Cambodians from 1975-79. She wanted to highlight that great things can come from adversity. Facebook’s response? They blocked the ad saying it was, “shocking, disrespectful, and sensational content.” Ms. Heng went on the offense, like Senator Blackburn, and made the rounds of conservative news sites. Soon after, both Facebook and Twitter changed their minds and restored her ad.
I knew I could probably find Heng’s ad on Youtube. I went hunting for it out of curiosity, and the ad is there but is currently age restricted. The few photos showing the horrors of the Pol Pot regime are in black and white and are fleeting images lasting all of 14 seconds. Hmmm…something didn’t smell right. I typed in “the Holocaust” to see what type of images I could see on some of these videos. One of the first ones I found was entitled “Auschwitz Concentration Camp Reel 2.” It is three minutes and 25 seconds of black and white Nazi horrors. Another video entitled “Belsen: Destruction of Camp” showed American soldiers having to deal with all the dead, naked Jewish bodies in large pits. Do you smell what I did? I smell double standard. Heng was running as a conservative and Facebook and Twitter blatantly censored her. Those are the facts. Heng lost her bid for Congress, but something tells me this strong, young woman will be back.
the prevalence of censorship of conservatives
These two stories are indicative of the biased treatment conservatives get from the big tech companies all run by leftists. Let’s listen to Candace Owens, an African American conservative, discuss the prevalence of censorship of conservatives by the tech giants in an interview with Stuart Varney.
Candace brings up a good point when she calls Google a monopoly that should be broken up. She’s right, of course. So, why isn’t Congress doing anything about this? Call your representative and senator today and demand action!
facebook curators spill the beans
Okay, in 2016 several former Facebook employees who worked as news curators told the online tech site, Gizmodo, that they routinely suppressed conservative news stories in the “trending” news section of its platform. They were also told to insert selected stories into the trending section even if they weren’t popular or trending.
One whistleblower making these accusations against Facebook spoke anonymously because he is conservative and feared retribution. He said, “I’d come on shift and discover that CPAC or Mitt Romney or Glenn Beck or popular conservative topics wouldn’t be trending because either the curator didn’t recognize the news topic or it was like they had a bias against Ted Cruz.”
Another former employee said, “It was absolutely biased. We were doing it subjectively. It just depends on who the curator is and what time of day it is.” It’s also notable that according to Gizmodo, the small group of curators were young journalists who were mostly educated at Ivy League or East Coast universities. That speaks for itself folks. Most of these curators are liberals with an obvious bias against conservatives.
ideological echo chambers
So, what about Youtube? I told you about my experience, but are there other conservatives getting censored on Youtube? Let’s begin with the fact that Youtube is owned by Google. What do we know about Google? Plenty. Remember James Damore? He was the young Google software engineer who dared to write an internal memo questioning the company’s diversity policies. In his memo, Damore called Google an “ideological echo chamber” and decried methods like shaming and reverse discrimination which Google uses to rectify what they believe are diversity problems.
Although Damore makes several suggestions for improvements in his memo, here’s one that stands out. “Stop alienating conservatives…In highly progressive environments, conservatives are a minority that feel like they need to stay in the closet to avoid open hostility. We should empower those with different ideologies to be able to express themselves.” What do you think became of Damore? Yep, soon after his memo made the rounds of Google, he was fired for “violation of Google’s code of conduct.” By the way, I have created a link on bethelightdaily.com under resources where you can read Damore’s memo in its entirety. It’s well thought out, well written, and offers many reasonable suggestions. Unfortunately, he triggered too many snowflakes who work at Google and they wanted him gone.
notable examples of conservative censorship
Now that we’ve established that Google and Youtube are leftist ideological echo chambers, it’s easy to understand why the following people have either been completely banned from Youtube or have had several of their videos censored.
Journalist Mike Cernovich’s video about Antifa chanting death threats to those attending his Night for Freedom event has been taken down by Youtube.
Jordan Peterson, a popular, common sense Canadian professor who is known for debating left-wingers and winning the debates, was also banned.
Ashton Whitty, a conservative vlogger and Berkeley student, had a video she created criticizing CNN for their coverage of the Parkland shooting taken down by Youtube. She was issued a strike. If you get three strikes in three months, your channel can be permanently deleted.
Conservative talk show host, Alex Jones, had his Infowars Youtube site with over two million viewers permanently banned by Youtube.
Prager University, the brainchild of conservative talk show host Dennis Prager, is a Youtube site with very professionally created five minute videos on dozens of topics aimed at clarifying issues and historical events. Several of Prager University videos have been censored. Thankfully, Prager U decided to file a lawsuit against Google and Youtube for discrimination against conservatives. Let’s pray he wins.
Now let’s listen to an interview on the Jesse Waters Show where Diamond and Silk express the Facebook censorship they’ve experienced. Go to about 2:58 in the video to hear this.
Incredible. Facebook has no shame. These conservative ladies have been successful and the left can’t have that because they are both black and conservative.
This quote from Carl Benjamin pretty much sums up the way the left from all walks of life, but especially those with the power to censor, feel about anyone who is not on the far left. “Google’s active suppression of individualist ideas within its own ranks has caused classical liberal and conservative commentators to be considered…Nazis, and [they] are being treated with the same kind of prejudice and ruthlessness.”
what can conservatives do about censorship?
So what can we do about all this? Well, if you have money, you can fight back in court like Dennis Prager is doing and like Robert Tuinen successfully did. Or, if you’re crazy enough, you can do what conservative activist Laura Loomer did after she got banned permanently from Twitter. She chained herself to the site’s front door. You gotta love her, folks!
Here’s another option. You could do what African American conservative, Candace Owens did following her Twitter suspension. She began to look for alternative social media sites. I, too, started immediately scouring the web for alternative sites where I could air my podcasts and my videos. Here are some I have found.
Instead of Facebook, try Tea Party Community. Like its namesake implies, all members are conservative. Another Facebook alternative is Pro America Only. I just signed up for this one and found it easy to register and use. The only downside is they have the right to send you campaign literature via your email. The important thing, however, is that this site promises not to censor you. In addition, there is no advertising on the site, and they have a stated goal of getting conservatives elected. Check it out.
Have you heard of Gab? Gab is a great alternative to Twitter. You can discuss or upload anything without censorship. In addition, it’s very easy to connect with others. Most people at Gab are not what the driveby media has portrayed. They are decent people with a conservative viewpoint.
As an alternative to Youtube, try Bit Chute. This one is also easy to use and does not censor its users. I found other alternatives to these tech giants and will post all of their links on my resources page at bethelightdaily.com.
Finally, whether you choose to sue, chain yourself to one of their corporate office doors, or choose an alternative social media site, it’s important that we remember what the Bible has to say on all this. Regarding censorship, Romans tells us, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.” God will not allow the truth to be censored or suppressed. Let’s also remember that God is constantly fighting for us if we abide in and seek to serve Him. Psalm 143:12 reminds us of this. It says, “In your unfailing love, silence my enemies; destroy all my foes, for I am your servant.” Finally, the Bible also admonishes us to pray for our enemies. Matthew 5:44 puts it this way, “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”
As always, let’s end in prayer and remember to go out there and Be the Light Daily!
Heavenly Father, your essence is love and you show your love for us daily in all sorts of situations. We glorify you, Lord, for all you do for us, and we thank you for sending your precious son, Jesus, to die in our place for our sins so that if we believe in Him we will have eternal life.
Help us, Father, to remember to always turn to you and your word first whenever we encounter persecution or problems of any kind. You have the answers, you fight for your children, and you provide blessings too plentiful to count. We pray for those individuals working at social media sites who target conservatives and Christians and who choose to suppress the truth.
We ask that you lift the veil from their eyes that they might see the truth and refuse to participate in the censorship of good people telling the truth. We also lift up those upright individuals like Dennis Prager who have chosen to take the fight to Youtube in a court of law. We ask you, Lord, to create a positive outcome for him as he fights this tech giant.
Finally, Father, help us remember your words from Romans. “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” In Jesus’ name, Amen.