Freedom Truckers vs GoFundMe Leftists | News, Sports, Jobs
When GoFundMe ended funding for the truckers’ Freedom Convoy on Friday, it didn’t just hit Canadian rig drivers; he dealt a blow to American rights. Silicon Valley leaders are trying to limit the causes Americans support, favoring leftists and overruling conservatives.
We Americans have the constitutionally protected right to donate money to any cause we choose, the Supreme Court has ruled in Buckley v. Valeo. Money funds political activity, and limiting where we can donate is like muzzling our speech.
Canadian truckers launched a convoy in Ottawa last month to protest Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s vaccination mandate on all rig drivers. Never mind the absurdity of requiring a trucker to drive alone for 18 hours a day to be vaccinated.
The convoy set up a fundraising site on GoFundMe to pay for fuel, food and accommodation. Many Americans rushed to support him. He had reached $10 million in donations when GoFundMe pulled the plug.
Nearly a quarter of Americans donate on crowdfunding sites, according to Pew Research. GoFundMe is the biggest. This is the public place for fundraising, and it should be open to everyone, regardless of their politics.
Yet GoFundMe is stopping fundraising for causes the left doesn’t like. It’s as dangerous to our democracy as when other Silicon Valley tech giants like Facebook and Twitter silence views.
The Freedom Convoy reached Ottawa on January 29 and filled the city’s streets with 18-wheelers and protesters calling for freedom of health care and an end to the government’s excessive COVID mandates.
It’s a joke. Even CNN reports “no bloodshed” has occurred. The New York Times concedes the worst is heavy traffic and truck horns.
By Friday night, when GoFundMe shut down the site for good, there had been only three arrests despite thousands of protesters. On Sunday, police reported more arrests and investigations, but the number is still miniscule overall. Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson’s biggest complaint is that truckers show “insensitivity” by creating noise and “make it a party.”
Contrast that with the chaos and violence in Portland, Oregon in 2020. The truth is, GoFundMe had no problem with this disorder. The site raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for the Portland General Defense Committee to defend rioters who torched police stations, vandalized City Hall, brandished weapons and injured police officers.
Even now, GoFundMe is raising funds for Black Lives Matter NYC to engage in “civil disobedience and disruption”. GoFundMe loves BLM’s brand of civil disobedience.
The framers of the Constitution prohibited the government from censoring, but they did not anticipate Big Tech. The Democrats are content to supplement the left-handers of Silicon Valley to muzzle the deplorable and prevent any exchange of ideas. And money.
Democrats in Congress insist Big Tech should stamp out “disinformation.” Trudeau slammed truckers for spreading “disinformation.”
Who decides what disinformation is? Judge Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. said the “best test of truth” is whether it survives in “market competition”. Silicon Valley is stifling competition.
There are two remedies. The first is for Congress to regulate Big Tech like utilities or common carriers, obliging them to serve all customers without discrimination in perspective. Water companies and railways cannot refuse service to customers with unpopular opinions. Big Tech should operate by the same rules.
Unfortunately, such legislation is unlikely to be passed. About half of Democratic members’ stock holdings are in big tech, compared to just 14% for Republicans.
The second recourse is the Supreme Court. It is possible that the majority will limit Big Tech censorship when a case arises.
In April 2021, Judge Clarence Thomas warned, in a concurring opinion, that the CEOs of social media giants – a mere handful of executives – have the power to ban even a President of the United States from the digital public square.
Thomas seems set to declare that the First Amendment prohibits censorship not only by the government but also by social media.
GoFundMe’s attack on the Freedom Convoy is the latest red flag that Silicon Valley’s power over us must be stopped.
Betsy McCaughey is a former Lieutenant Governor of New York and author of “The Next Pandemic” available on Amazon.com. Follow her on Twitter @Betsy_McCaughey. To learn more about Betsy McCaughey and read articles by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.