by William A. Jacobson at legalinsurrection.com
The thrust of the motion for a stay focuses on the scope of the preliminary injunction, claiming it is overly broad and prohibits speech protected by the First Amendment. That may resonate with an appeals court, and specific injunctive language is the weakest link in defending this substantively strong decision.
On July 4, 2023, a federal judge in the Western District of Louisiana issued a stunning decision and preliminary injunction finding substantial evidence that the federal government colluded with large tech and social media platforms to censor opposition viewpoints online.
We covered the ruling in Independence Day: Federal Court Enjoins Biden-Big Tech Collusive “far-reaching and widespread censorship campaign” against Conservatives, including these excerpts (emphasis added) to the Judge’s Memorandum Decision:
The Plaintiffs are likely to succeed on the merits in establishing that the Government has used its power to silence the opposition. Opposition to COVID-19 vaccines; opposition to COVID-19 masking and lockdowns; opposition to the lab-leak theory of COVID-19; opposition to the validity of the 2020 election; opposition to President Biden’s policies; statements that the Hunter Biden laptop story was true; and opposition to policies of the government officials in power. All were suppressed. It is quite telling that each example or category of suppressed speech was conservative in nature. This targeted suppression of conservative ideas is a perfect example of viewpoint discrimination of political speech. American citizens have the right to engage in free debate about the significant issues affecting the country.
Although this case is still relatively young, and at this stage the Court is only examining it in terms of Plaintiffs’ likelihood of success on the merits, the evidence produced thus far depicts an almost dystopian scenario. During the COVID-19 pandemic, a period perhaps best characterized by widespread doubt and uncertainty, the United States Government seems to have assumed a role similar to an Orwellian “Ministry of Truth.”721
721 An “Orwellian ‘Ministry of Truth’” refers to the concept presented in George Orwell’s dystopian novel, ‘1984.’ In the novel, the Ministry of Truth is a governmental institution responsible for altering historical records and disseminating propaganda to manipulate and control public perception.read more