Trump Calls For Revoke Of Section 230 After Twitter Flags His Minneapolis Tweet For ‘Glorifying Violence’



Twitter has placed a “public interest” notice on a tweet from President Donald Trump that appeared to threaten opening fire against looters following a third night of protests and clashes with police in Minneapolis.
A police officer stands watch as a looted pawn shop burns in the background on May 28, 2020, in ... [+] Minneapolis. As unrest continues after the killing of George Floyd, fires have been set in buildings across Minneapolis and St. Paul.Getty Images


Trump had earlier tweeted condemning Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, and added in a second tweet he had told Governor Tim Walz “that the Military is with him all the way.”

“These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen. Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!” said Trump in the tweet.

“We’ve taken action in the interest of preventing others from being inspired to commit violent acts, but have kept the Tweet on Twitter because it is important that the public still be able to see the Tweet given its relevance to ongoing matters of public importance,” Twitter said in a tweet from its communications team.

Twitter had already earned the president’s ire this week for applying fact-check tags to two Trump tweets that shared misleading comments about mail-in ballots and voter fraud.

“If it were legal, if it could be legally shut down, I would do it,” said Trump, speaking from the Oval Office about Twitter after he signed an executive order that seeks to limit a law that shields social media platforms like Twitter from lawsuits.

The executive order targets Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which gives social networks like Facebook and Twitter immunity from being sued over the content from users that appears on their sites.

The order was met with a chorus of criticism from tech companies, and civil liberties groups, and would likely face legal challenges.

Trump claimed again on Friday, without evidence, that Twitter and other social networks are biased against conservative voices and have framed Twitter’s decision to step up policing of content on its platform as censorship. 

Trump’s comment appears to echo the remarks of former Miami police chief Walter Headley, who threatened a violent crackdown on protests over his stop-and-frisk tactics targeting African Americans in 1967.

key background

The digital standoff between President Donald Trump and the social media platform that propelled him to the Oval Office played out as a police station was set alight in Minneapolis on the third night of protests over the death of a black man in police custody. George Floyd, 46, died on Monday after a white police officer kneeled on his neck in an incident that was captured on camera, and reignited public anger over police killings of African Americans. Hundreds of Minnesota National Guard troops were deployed to the city following clashes between police and protesters and incidents of looting and arson.

further reading

Trump Signs Executive Order Attempting To Restrict Liability Protections Of Internet Companies Like Twitter (Forbes)

National Guard Called To Minneapolis As Unrest Continues In Wake Of George Floyd’s Death (Forbes)