Reminder: Censorship Is Bad

Libertarians are praising censorship. It's not quite as cringey as "But what if the child consents?" but it's still pretty bad.

Censorship and discrimination work really well on a small scale. But these concepts don't scale-up very well. Kind of like government.

Sure, Twitter technically has the right to remove users from its platform. Twitter has a lengthy Terms of Service agreement that no one is expected to read, and buried within that agreement are some vague terms that people frequently violate. Twitter arbitrarily enforces those terms on people Twitter doesn't like. Twitter discriminates.

Is it fraud? Can you make an argument that this fraud is a violation of the Non Aggression Principle? I guess so. But I don't really care that if it's a violation of the NAP. I'd rather frame it in a way that the average person can understand: censorship on a large scale is a bad idea. It makes entire groups of people feel persecuted for their political views. It turns political groups into "others, enemies, and victims." In other countries, censorship has been a precursor to civil unrest, violence, political and ethnic cleansing, and civil war.

Libertarians should consider this before they praise Twitter for its free market censorship (it's not really free market action, but that's how everyone is framing it, progressives included). Most of us don't want civil war and can't understand what that would really mean (imagine: no running water or electricity, blown apart infrastructure, dead people in the streets, chaos).

The libertarian refusal to address the nuance in this situation is a sign of immaturity and our unhealthy desperation to appeal to the left. When we discuss censorship in social media we should think about what we're ultimately oriented towards. I'm oriented towards freedom. I want my messaging to reflect that and to encourage other people to be oriented towards freedom. Praising censorship on a mass scale doesn't reflect those values, and it doesn't course correct other terrible ideas progressives have about authoritarian rule.

We should remind progressives of the damage that mass censorship has had in the past. And we shouldn't seek to "punish" our political opponents. Remember the path Germany took after the world punished them post WWI. Retribution and humiliation led to nazism.

If we let liberty, not pandering, be our guiding principle, we're more likely to end up in a place of freedom.

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