The scene was Capitol Hill as the House Energy and Commerce Committee held a hearing on Big Tech.
But as Republican Rep. Speaks. Dan Crenshaw of Texas about the major challenge posed by technology unimaginable in the days of the Founding Fathers, the spirit of the freedom -loving Americans who drafted the First Amendment poured into the hearing room. .
Wednesday’s hearing was called nominal to discuss Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which protects tech companies from liability. After hearing from witnesses, Crenshaw language of his mind about the battle between freedom and censorship taking place.
Crenshaw he said he was concerned that “advocates of censorship tend to want to censor in only one direction. They do not want to be neutral in their application of community standards. ”
He noted that when real people engage in democracy, the process is not for the faint of heart.
“Whose fault is it that people are horrible to each other? Whose fault is it if a bad person spreads lies or hatred? Is it the medium of communication or the person spreading it?” he said.
“This is a very fundamental question because free speech is so chaotic. Our founders knew that when they wrote the First Amendment.”
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Crenshaw said the downside of democracy defeating the upside of censorship.
“It can result in all sorts of chaos and pain and hurt feelings because the human race is really what it is,” he said. “But let’s clarify that it’s better than the alternative.”
Crenshaw noted that having a group of so -called experts will decide who should read what is completely wrong.
“This independent steering committee is discussed with an elite, irresponsible few who control what we see and what we don’t. I don’t want us to go down that path, ”he said.
Crenshaw noted that while Republicans want to unshackle free speech, that is not the intention of Congressional Democrats.
“I want to be clear on something else. Republicans and Democrats don’t agree on this issue,” he said.
“I’ve observed a smart approach to the media and some of my colleagues suggesting that we all agree, that we’re all moving in the right direction towards the same thing: We’re all mad at Big Tech. It’s not It’s really true; we have different views on the problem. “
Crenshaw said that in any contest of what is most important in this country, the freedom of every American to speak his or her mind must win.
“One of the bills under consideration today puts companies on the hook for any content that causes severe emotional harm, which remains undefined and open to interpretation,” he said.
“It’s fundamentally non-American that your hurt feelings should dictate my free speech,” he said.
Crenshaw said there was an unholy association in between Big Tech and Democrats.
“I think the Democrat Party wants to censor based on vague interpretations of harmful language and misinformation, which always means things they don’t agree with. They will not legally violate the First Amendment, so bully Big Tech to do it for you, ”he said.
“We can’t go this path.”
This article originally appeared on The Western Journal.
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