The Socialist Workers Party (SWP) freaked out yesterday when they discovered that their pals over at Facebook had removed their official page along with a cluster of associated accounts. The group made a habit of posting pro-Palestine content, Black Lives Matter material, calls to anti-capitalist rallies, and campaigned against Boris Johnson’s policies surrounding the Covid19 outbreak.
‘Press release: Facebook shuts down major left-wing group in Britain!’ was followed by the bemused question, ‘Why is Facebook silencing political activists?’
It is a question that the left have never bothered asking when, for the last two weeks, Twitter and Facebook erased conservative user accounts in one of the largest political purges of the modern era.
According to an article posted on the SWP website, this is the second time Facebook has swung the sickle at their group, but Facebook re-instated the accounts after they put pressure on the social media giant who later claimed it was an ‘error’.
It is both entertaining and frustrating to watch the response to Facebook’s actions on Twitter, where far-left users appear ‘shocked’ that Silicon Valley would dare apply their community standards to the SWP. Any rally cry that a ‘private company can do what it likes!’ immediately vanished from the narrative.
‘This is dangerous – corporate censorship of legitimate left-wing organization. Free speech means the freedom to campaign for all oppressed groups. If we don’t stop Facebook doing this they’ll not only move against the wider left, but lead a corporate takeover of democracy itself,’ says WeMustRiseBetter.
‘What is going on? Why are Facebook silencing the Left?’ adds Michael Dance.
Reading their outrage, you would be forgiven for thinking that the left only agrees with censorship when it means silencing people they don’t like.
Conservatives and libertarians have been warning the world for years that censorship, whether it be initiated by government or Big Tech, is an arms race that leads to silence. While the SWP are fending off accusations about supporting censorship against the right by copying links to a recent article titled, ‘The social media bosses are not on our side’, their audience of radicalised children are definitely in favour of silencing their political opposition.
The young left, as an online group, are a crowd of budding censors. They have formed packs of activists whose entire purpose is to trawl through social media, mass reporting people from the other side of politics in the hopes of getting them suspended. It should not surprise the SWP that their followers behave this way, considering their article contains incitement to this effect, ‘it’s understandable to feel cheered that Trump is being denied a platform’.
While the bigwigs at the head of the SWP movement have realised the problem of Silicon Valley acting as a political gatekeeper, the only reason Facebook and Twitter can overtly censor speech in the first place is because socialist activists encouraged this behaviour in their quest to destroy conservatism and take power for themselves.
Personally, I’m all for letting the SWP speak. They make the true purpose of the Black Lives Matter and Climate Change movements clear – their activism is about the complete destruction of the capitalist democracy to instate a socialist dictatorship.