Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.
If you don’t think that Big Tech and their media allies zero in on the conservatives they most despise, then you haven’t been paying attention to Florida over the past year. Sunshine State Gov. Ron DeSantis has been a favorite target of the corporate media for his method of handling the coronavirus pandemic, which has been to promote vaccines and acknowledge that Americans are inherently free people.
So, it was no surprise to see Silicon Valley giant Twitter in cahoots with the venerable Associated Press to attack DeSantis’ office over an issue that involved COVID and the attempted canceling of a conservative on social media.
In this episode of Cancel Culture Run Amok, DeSantis’ press secretary, Christina Pushaw, is the latest victim of Big Tech’s political censorship campaign. Pushaw was temporarily locked out of her Twitter account after daring to push back against an AP reporter making dubious charges against her boss.
She had objected to a story which suggested that DeSantis was touting a COVID antibody treatment manufactured by Regeneron because a major political donor of his invests in the company.
The AP provided no evidence that DeSantis promoted the drug for any purpose other than protecting the health of Floridians. Indeed, in the story, the AP was forced to admit that the Regeneron treatments “have been shown to cut rates of hospitalization and death by roughly 70%.”
The AP tried to make the point that vaccines are preferred because they prevent COVID infection, while the Regeneron drugs are used on patients who are already sick. But DeSantis never made any claims to the contrary, and in fact, has promoted the use of vaccines extensively as well.
Further undermining their premise was the fact that both the Trump and Biden administrations have touted the Regeneron drugs as effective for people who have contracted COVID.
And as for the charge that any promotion of Regeneron was good for the finances of one of his political donors?
Well, the insinuation that the DeSantis donor was raking in cash because of DeSantis’ promotion of a particular drug was undercut by PolitiFact, which noted that “his firm is only a small investor in Regeneron, and one of more than a thousand institutions with a stake in the company.”
And finally, as DeSantis pointed out in a letter to the AP, “as the federal government long ago bought out the entire stock of Regeneron’s COVID monoclonal treatment, it is not even a plausible concept.”
So much for the AP’s blockbuster story.
When Pushaw took to Twitter to defend her boss, she was doing her job and engaging in exactly the sort of thing that would be heralded on social media and allowed to trend on Twitter if she were a liberal Democrat.
So, what was her grave offense, warranting a trip to Twitter jail? Pushaw poked holes in the AP’s story and then asked her followers to “drag them,” a term defined by Urban Dictionary as meaning to, “roast someone very hard.”
For the uninitiated, “dragging” is a kind of sport on Twitter, occurring thousands of times every day, most often with conservatives as the object of the scorn.
She also tweeted messages that included the phrase, “put you on blast,” which is commonly accepted to mean highlighting someone for a specific action or deed.
When someone is critical of conservatives in this manner, Twitter rarely bats an eye, but in this case, they sentenced Pushaw to 12 hours in the digital slammer.
For her part, Pushaw denied trying to direct the governor’s followers to target the reporter and deleted the tweets to avoid confusion. She stands by her assertion that the story was misleading.
But what this incident highlights is the need for a new social media platform like GETTR—a new “cancel free” social media platform that has attracted over 2 million users in just two months of existence. In fact, GETTR is the fasted growing social media platform in history, marking its first million users in just three days, while Twitter took 24 months and Facebook needed 10.
On GETTR, users engage in the marketplace of ideas, challenging Big Tech’s control on information sharing and the broader public discourse.
On GETTR, no one will be canceled for their political opinions, because we are not afraid of competing thoughts.
And on GETTR, Christina Pushaw would have been free to defend her boss without fear of suspension.