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It’s a bad day for free speech. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that the government may continue to pressure Big Tech companies to censor speech it disapproves of, and dissenting Justice Samuel Alito tore the outrageous decision apart.

The Court ruled 6-3 — with Justice Amy Coney Barrett authoring the Opinion — that the complainants lacked standing to file an “injunction against any defendant” because they failed to demonstrate “particularized” harm. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Brett Kavanaugh joined in the majority’s ridiculous position.

The Court’s explicit gaslighting as to the Big Tech companies’ independent reasons for censoring content was particularly galling. “And while the record reflects the Government defendants played a role in at least some of the platforms’ moderation choices, the evidence indicates that the platforms had independent incentives to moderate content and often exercised their own judgment,” Barrett wrote on behalf of the majority. The absurd implication here is that yes, the government was strong-arming the platforms, but it was ultimately the tech companies’ decision. 

Alito went straight to the point in his dissent, joined by Justices Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas: “For months, high-ranking Government officials placed unrelenting pressure on Facebook to suppress Americans’ free speech. Because the Court unjustifiably refuses to address this serious threat to the First Amendment, I respectfully dissent.” 

Alito, writing for the minority, further rebuked that what the government did in colluding with Big Tech to censor Americans “was blatantly unconstitutional, and the country may come to regret the Court’s failure to say so.”

In shirking its duty to properly tackle the un-American onslaught against free speech brought before the Court, Alito said the majority “permits the successful campaign of coercion in this case to stand as an attractive model for future officials who want to control what the people say, hear, and think.” 

Alito blasted the Court for treating the government’s incessant communications as simply “benign.” Effectively, Alito said the Court spun that the government “merely ‘asked the platforms for information’ and then ‘publicly and privately criticized the platforms for what the officials perceived as a … failure to live up to the platforms’ commitments.” But, as Alito correctly pointed out, “This characterization is not true to what happened.” 

As recounted by Alito, government officials “browbeat” Facebook “for months and made it clear that if it did not do more to combat what they saw as misinformation, it might be called to account for its shortcomings.”

The totality of the evidence “— constant haranguing, dozens of demands for compliance, and references to potential consequences— evince ‘a scheme of state censorship,’” Alito asserted. 

But that wasn’t all. 

Alito took the Court to task for defending the government’s position that Biden and his officials were just using the bully pulpit “‘to speak out on such matters of pressing public concern.’” Alito called out this blatantly false, bastardization of the facts, writing:

On the contrary, they were engaged in a covert scheme of censorship that came to light only after the plaintiffs demanded their emails in discovery and a congressional Committee obtained them by subpoena. If these communications represented the exercise of the bully pulpit, then everything that top federal officials say behind closed doors to any private citizen must also represent the exercise of the President’s bully pulpit. That stretches the concept beyond the breaking point.

Alito concluded, “In any event, the Government is hard-pressed to find any prior example of the use of the bully pulpit to threaten censorship of private speech.”

It’s clear the Court in its atrocious ruling completely upended the historical understanding of the First Amendment by permitting the Biden administration’s dystopian censorship enterprise to continue with impunity. Americans should be outraged.

The complainants in the case relied on original MRC Free Speech America research documenting evidence of Big Tech censoring to protect Biden to bolster their initial lawsuit. 

Conservatives are under attack. Contact your representatives and demand that Big Tech be held to account to mirror the First Amendment while providing transparency, clarity on so-called hate speech and equal footing for conservatives. If you have been censored, contact us using CensorTrack’s contact form, and help us hold Big Tech accountable.