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Amid all the turmoil in America of late, there may not be a more far-reaching crisis than the ongoing effort to censor speech.
In the run-up to the November election, Big Tech platforms like Google, which owns YouTube, Twitter and Facebook now censor content with abandon, deciding what is and is not acceptable speech.
The latest example of this involves a GoFundMe account set up by Candace Owens, titled “Mob rule has no place in America,” which was subsequently shut down after raising $205,000 in a few hours.
The conservative activist launched a GoFundMe campaign in support of Michael Dykes, a Birmingham bar owner who called George Floyd a “thug” — Floyd served at least four stints in prison, including a 5-year sentence for aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon. The media narrative is that at the age of 46, he was turning his life around, though a toxicology report said he had fentanyl in his system at the time of his death, as well as meth.
Dykes also called the protesters idiots, suggesting a “protest tax” should be added to drinks for having to close early due to curfews imposed over the protests.
“Mr. Floyd was a thug, didn’t deserve to die but honoring a thug is irresponsible,” the bar owner said.
The intolerant left called for boycotting the business after a now-former employee leaked Dyke’s words, which were expressed in a text message to two managers that was then circulated to employees. Owens would launch the GoFundMe campaign in response, saying she’s “sick of the mob ruining people’s lives” for having different opinions.
Owens said in the campaign description that Dykes was inspired when he “watched my video which garnered 100 million views in 42 hours, about the irresponsibility of the George Floyd protests and riots.”
The part where Michael Dykes describes himself as "inspired" by the "amazing" @RealCandaceO basically undercuts the entire apology. He didn't insert his foot in his mouth; he spoke what was and remains on his heart.
— John Carvalho (@John_P_Carvalho) June 6, 2020
Taking to Twitter early Sunday, Owens announced that the campaign had been shut down for violating its terms of service.
“After raising $205,000 in a few hours @gofundme decided to halt my campaign for the Parkside Cafe in Alabama. At their discretion, they deemed that funds raised for a conservative business constitutes “intolerance,” she tweeted. “They WILL however give the funds raised thus far to the cafe…”
After raising $205,000 in a few hours @gofundme decided to halt my campaign for the Parkside Cafe in Alabama. At their discretion, they deemed that funds raised for a conservative business constitutes “intolerance”
They WILL however give the funds raised thus far to the cafe… pic.twitter.com/Mfw88iDKRi
— Candace Owens (@RealCandaceO) June 7, 2020
In a pair of follow up tweets, Owens spoke to a greater cause than an Alabama bar attacked for not adhering to the hard-left’s take on events.
“While I am glad they will give the funds raised this far to the cafe to the owner, I am angry that such a blatant form of discrimination is acceptable by @gofundme. There was NOTHING intolerant or violent about raising funds to help a conservative business owner,” she tweeted.
“Once again, conservatives and Trump supporters need to adapt to a world that tells us that our very existence is unacceptable,” Owens added. “That our ideas, thoughts, and now even our charitable efforts are unacceptable. That threatening, boycotting, and cancelling us is okay,” Owens concluded.
Once again, conservatives and Trump supporters need to adapt to a world that tells us that our very existence is unacceptable. That our ideas, thoughts, and now even our charitable efforts are unacceptable. That threatening, boycotting, and cancelling us is okay.
— Candace Owens (@RealCandaceO) June 7, 2020
GoFundMe issued a statement defending its actions, according to AL.com.
“GoFundMe has suspended the account associated with Candace Owens and the GoFundMe campaign has been removed because of a repeated pattern of inflammatory statements that spread hate, discrimination, intolerance and falsehoods against the black community at a time of profound national crisis,” the company said. “These actions violate our terms of service. Furthermore, the Parkside Cafe has clearly condemned the comments that initially led to this campaign.”
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