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The Facebook Ad Boycott Is About Silencing Conservatives, Not Stopping ‘Hate’

I&I Editorial

In the latest twist on cancel culture, major corporate advertisers are pulling ads from Facebook as part of a #StopHateForProfit campaign launched last week by the Anti-Defamation League. But this campaign isn’t about stopping hate.

On Wednesday, Goodby Silverstein & Partners – which represents companies such as BMW, Frito-Lay, PepsiCo and HP – said it’s joining what is supposed to be a month-long Facebook boycott in July.

“We are taking this action to protest the platform’s irresponsible propagation of hate speech, racism, and misleading voter information,” the ad agency tweeted.

Goodby joins the likes of The North Face, Patagonia, Ben & Jerry’s, Eileen Fisher, Eddie Bauer, Magnolia Pictures, Upwork, HigherRing, Dashlane and Talkspace in pledging to yank ads from Facebook in July.

The Anti-Defamation League teamed up with the NAACP, and lesser-known groups such as Sleeping Giants, Color of Change, Free Press and Common Sense, to launch the boycott in response, it says, “to Facebook’s long history of allowing racist, violent and verifiably false content to run rampant on its platform.”

But it doesn’t take much investigative work to realize that this campaign is really about pressuring Facebook to do more than it already is to block conservative speech.

In the press release announcing the boycott, NAACP President Derrick Johnson complains that Facebook won’t take “significant steps to remove political propaganda from its platform.” 

Wait. What’s racist or violent about political propaganda? And who decides what makes certain political speech “propaganda”?

Johnson also complains that Facebook is “complacent in the spread of misinformation.” Doesn’t the left consider anything conservatives say to be “misinformation”?

Facebook is also guilty, the boycott group says, of “protecting … voter suppression.”

Dig a little deeper and you realize that “voter suppression” can mean anything from campaigns to mislead voters about when or where they should vote, to completely legitimate claims that imposing an all-mail voting system this November would create new opportunities for fraud.

Next, take a look at the groups organizing the campaign.

Sleeping Giants describes itself as “a campaign to make bigotry and sexism less profitable.” Its mission appears to be deplatforming conservatives.

The organization cheered, for example, when Twitter announced that it was permanently banning British commentator Katie Hopkins, who had a million followers on the platform and has been a columnist for The Sun and The Daily Mail, but whose views were apparently too controversial (read conservative) for Twitter. This is a platform, mind you where the hashtag #killTrump is perfectly OK.

Color of Change calls itself the nation’s largest online racial justice organization and has as one of its goals “dismantling right-wing … infrastructure/support” and “challenging … anti-progressive Trump administration and state policies.”

Its president, Rashad Robinson, has come out in favor of defunding the police, which he calls a “violent institution.”

Common Sense Media is run by Jim Steyer, who has close ties to Hillary Clinton and is the brother of environmental extremist Tom Steyer.

Net neutrality advocacy group Free Press is also involved in the campaign, which is supremely ironic given that its support for net neutrality is premised on “enabling anyone to share and access information of their choosing without interference.” Is it not aware that it’s specifically demanding that Facebook disable and interfere with users’ ability to “share and access information of their choosing”?

The Anti-Defamation League’s decision to attack Facebook is also curious, since Twitter is rife with anti-Semitic language. Two years ago, in fact, the ADL found at least 4.2 million anti-Semitic tweets over a 12-month period.

Just a few days ago, the ADL took fire for its weak response to anti-Semitic tweets from rapper Ice Cube, about which it was able to muster only the term “disheartening.”

Why does Twitter get a free pass from these groups? Could it be because Twitter has been aggressively attacking President Donald Trump and those who want limited government, low taxes, free markets, free speech, and the right to own a gun?

So this boycott is nothing more than a politically motivated attempt to silence non-leftist speech. Companies backing it should be ashamed of themselves, not Facebook.

— Written by the I&I Editorial Board.

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The Issues and Insights Editorial Board has decades of experience in journalism, commentary and public policy.


    • You do not have the numbers to do so. This is the problem with old conservatives. Your values do not align with those of us who are fiscal conservatives. And until then, I will vote for Democrats.

      • Yes let Bidden strong arm a government threatening to withhold a billion dollars in loan guarantees if they refuse to fire the prosecutor that was investigating Burisma. The company that paid Hunter Biden 3 million dollars to consult on the board of a gas company he had zero background or knowledge in.

      • Yeah, only Trump gets to appoint people to roles they have zero background or knowledge in. Besty DeVoss, Scott Pruitt, Ben Carson, Steven Mnuchin, Rick Perry. And that was just in in his first month.

  • Fun to watch you lunatics becoming crybabies. I won’t call you conservatives, because Burke, Adams., Reagan, Kirk, et al would have nothing to do with you

  • We understand very well that it is censorship, by people seeking to elect a Democrat and hide anything that exposes the truth. I have been around a while and have never seen anything more closely resembling the worst dictatorships in history as the current tactics being used by the left. I am convinced we have not seen the worst yet by any means. This country will be shaken to the core.

  • Finally an honest headline about the issue. Most of the articles about the ad boycotters say things like “Boycotting Facebook: Eddie Bauer, Ben & Jerry’s and other companies join campaign to halt ads” or “These are the companies boycotting Facebook over its hate policies”.

    What they should really be saying is “These are the companies that don’t want to allow conservative voices to speak”.

    The “Hate policies” these companies are butthurt about are entirely conservative voices. From their perspectives there’s nothing wrong with people calling for Trump to be beheaded, or conservatives to be run down in the streets, but a conservative pointing out this hypocrisy must be silenced.

  • It is hard to comprehend we have a nation so dumbed down that they have been manipulated to work against their own interests. Is this country really ready to give up freedom and liberty so easily? Do we really want a poorer quality of life? No matter what anyone is promised, everyone, I repeat everyone would have a lower quality of life if America were to give up its freedom and liberty. I pray we as a country choose to keep our freedoms and liberty. Please join me.

  • “Completely legitimate claims that imposing an all-mail voting system this November would create new opportunities for fraud” Please one non-partisan study to support this claim. Pay your readers that respect.

    • Arrests made in New Jersey this week for voter fraud where 19% of mail in votes were fraudulent. At least 1200 plus documented voter fraud crimes across US in last four years with 25% involving mail in fraud according to the Heritage Foundation. Two separate Democrat election officials in two separate states charged this month with stuffing ballot boxes.

      • I agree the NJ arrests are disturbing. Of course, the people were caught and their careers are over. The Heritage Foundation is a conservative think tank, not unbiased. Any non-partisan studies anyone can find that show that fraud is higher with mail in balloting than in-person?

  • What if conservatives and everyone else who doesn’t agree with censorship stopped using Facebook, Twitter and the like? Check out Parler – It is very refreshing and has no agenda.

  • Someone should lead an effort to boycott those companies that are boycotting Facebook to surprise free speech. If it gets enough traction maybe they will back off. Hit them in their bottom line.

  • Republicans signed their own death certificate the minute they teamed up with Evangelical Christians. Do a quick Google search to find people leaving the church in droves since the 90s because of this.

    Your solution is simple. Either remove the Republican Party from backing conservative social issues…or go down with their ship. This country is clearly demanding a secular, equality based future where religion stays in its tax exempt place. And if they keep pushing, we will push to have those tax benefits removed. The Evangelical Church has become a Super PAC, to their own undoing. Will Republicans see the danger before it is too late? My guess is no. Look at the GOP in the face of a POTUS they can no longer afford to disagree with. As that ship sinks, many GOP Senators are neck deep in co-conspiracy, at least in the eyes of voters. It is past time for a fiscally conservative party to take the place of the fast dying Grand Ole Party. I for one would like an option at the ballot box. Until then, it will be a down the line vote for Democrats and more whining from old, out of touch Conservatives whining about how to change results without changing their very well established narrative. Boomers…it’s time to face the fact that America has changed and you no longer have the following alive to inflict a social agenda the majority will not tolerate.

    Adapt or die out. Pretty easy to understand.

  • “In America, we’re supposed to be comfortable with the dissemination of ideas that make us uncomfortable. We’re supposed to understand that when authorities or powerful institutions banish someone else’s idea from the public square, it won’t be long before they banish your idea too. We’re supposed to be able to speak our mind – without fear of losing our liberty or livelihood – and let others decide for themselves what they think about it.”

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