Before Christmas, this was floated: Twitter could permanently ban Donald Trump. At the time, being the sitting president, he was offered an exemption. You can’t ban the leader of the free world. Well, given the events of this week and the storming of the Capitol Building by pro-Trump supporters, the social media giant has decided to ban the president of the United States days before he’s set to leave office.
“After assessing the language" in two Jan. 8 tweets "we have determined that these Tweets are in violation of the Glorification of Violence Policy and the user @realDonaldTrump should be immediately permanently suspended from the service,” Twitter said in a statement (via Fox News):
Twitter announced the permanent suspension of President Trump’s account Friday, after spending months flagging his tweets with warnings but stopping short of that step.
Sharing two relatively tame tweets the president made earlier in the day, including one in which he said he would not attend President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20, the company argued that they had to be viewed in part of a greater context.
"These two Tweets must be read in the context of broader events in the country and the ways in which the President’s statements can be mobilized by different audiences, including to incite violence, as well as in the context of the pattern of behavior from this account in recent weeks," the company said.
Full Twitter statement:— MSNBC (@MSNBC) January 8, 2021
"After assessing the language" in two Jan. 8 tweets "we have determined that these Tweets are in violation of the Glorification of Violence Policy and the user @realDonaldTrump should be immediately permanently suspended from the service." pic.twitter.com/BngNqdELXH
Some thoughts on Twitter's ban of Donald Trump:— Conor Friedersdorf (@conor64) January 8, 2021
1) We should concern ourselves about the precedent this sets for other users, especially depending on the platform's explanation.
2) But I think there are approaches that would avoid slippery slopes. I offered one in 2018 (1/x)
The terrorist Ayatollah of Iran and Chinese Communist Party are still allowed to tweet.— Greg Price (@greg_price11) January 8, 2021
But not Donald Trump pic.twitter.com/dewqJCYkGC
What Twitter accepts // what it won’t pic.twitter.com/1qiZnmqY7N— Drew Holden (@DrewHolden360) January 8, 2021
Twitter doesn't even realize what they've just done. They practically started a war. This isn't isolated to this platform. People are going to absolutely lose their minds.— Caleb Hull (I'm With the CCP Don't Ban Me) (@CalebJHull) January 8, 2021
you’re a moron if you think this won’t lead to twitter using this as a stepping stone to ban conservative news.— Logan Hall (@loganclarkhall) January 8, 2021
Fascism. https://t.co/n0u9dasCmZ— Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) January 7, 2021
Purging the sitting President from his primary communications platform is absolute authoritarian lunacy— Michael Tracey (@mtracey) January 8, 2021
Former First Lady Michelle Obama called on Trump to be banned on all social media platforms. We’ve fallen off the slippery slope here. Any speech Twitter or the Left views as inciting violence or glorifying it, will be subject to total bans. Remember folks, advocating for law and order could be construed as violating this policy. Liberals have viewed Tea Party supporters and those who want fewer taxes, smaller government, and fewer regulations as domestic terrorists and racists. We know how they think and how they feel about us. If Twitter can ban President Trump, we’re all on the target list. This isn’t the first time either. Twitter censored the president's tweets last summer during the wave of leftist rioting that engulfed the nation. And while we’re at it, Twitter bans Trump but allows Chinese propaganda and Iran’s Ayatollah Khamenei, the leader of the world’s largest state-sponsor of terrorism, to remain on the platform. These arbitrary standards that could get one banned are only applied to conservatives—always.
Liberal reporter Michael Tracey said it best. This is "absolute authoritarian lunacy."