The Proud Boys are holding a “free speech” rally for 4th of July weekend, and why not — white nationalism, grifting and ratfucking are as American as apple pie:
This week, then, white nationalist trolls and quasi-celebrities such as Proud Boy founder Gavin McInnes, former Pizzagate conspiracy theorist Jack Posobiec, gadfly and Twitter headquarters self-handcuffer Laura Loomer, dirty trickster Roger Stone (currently under indictment courtesy of the Mueller investigation) and the largely-forgotten-yet-apparently-not-gone Milo Yiannopoulos are hoping to capitalize on Trump’s 4th of July “Trumpstravaganza.”
This may be enough to get their rally some desperately desired attention. But “free speech” has nothing to do with it.
According to the rally’s website — under the all-caps header “THE FIRST AMENDMENT IS UNDER ATTACK!” — readers are told that “Our rights guaranteed under the United States constitution are being systematically violated” so they must “Join the rally to demand unbiased social media, and an end to censorship.” The site also asserts that the speakers include “well-known public figures who have been silenced by Big Tech.”
Alas, neither the First Amendment nor the term “free speech” mean what the organizers of this white whine festival seem to think they mean.
The thing is, nobody really thinks social media companies are legally or morally required to post literally anything anybody wants to put up — there are no rallies demanding that Facebook host footage from serial killings or sexually explicit images. All sites will have standards, and “no Nazis” is a perfectly sound standard that is not inconsistent with broader principles of “free speech” (let alone the First Amendment, which is completely irrelevant to these decisions.)
It’s sad that Sarah Palin has largely left behind from the rolling grift she helped to create. Well, more funny but anyway.