Facebook took the cancel culture religion to another level on Friday by banning Donald Trump from the platform until at least 2023, making sure the former president will be devoid of the most effective social channel in case he decides to launch another presidential bid.
In an interesting turn of events, the White House immediately endorsed Facebook's decision.
"We learned a lot from President Trump, the former president, over the last couple of years about his behavior and how he uses these platforms. It feels pretty unlikely that the zebra is going to change his stripes over the next two years. We'll see," White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said at her daily press briefing.
Risk to Public Safety
Facebook's decision was announced by Nick Clegg, its vice president of global affairs. Clegg was formerly British deputy prime minister. Facebook said Trump's actions were "a severe violation of our rules".
"At the end of this period, we will look to experts to assess whether the risk to public safety has receded," Clegg said.
Though the ban is for two years there are chances that Facebook may decide to ban Trump even longer.
Trump was barred indefinitely from both Facebook and Instagram in January 2020 after the violence at the US Capitol. He was also banned from other social channels like Twitter, YouTube, Snapchat and Twitch.
Trump Fires Back
Trump fired back on Friday, saying Facebook's decision was an insult to the American people. "Facebook's ruling is an insult to the record-setting 75m people, plus many others, who voted for us.. They shouldn't be allowed to get away with this censoring and silencing, and ultimately, we will win. Our country can't take this abuse anymore!" he said.
Facebook's decision came a time when Trump was planning to get back to the political stage by holding large rallies of supporters. One of his signature rallies is slated to take place in Dallas, Texas, in early July.
Outraged Republicans in Congress lashed out at Facebook and decried the unwieldy influence of the Big Tech. "Unless Congress acts, Big Tech is going to continue to censor Americans and trample on our foundational principles of free speech and open exchange of ideas in an effort to control what Americans say, hear, and think," Senator Bill Hagerty of Tennessee said. "Despite recently being exposed for wrongly banning and suppressing information regarding the origins of COVID-19, Facebook is now doubling down on its censorship playbook," he added.
Big Tech's Double Standards
Representative Mark Green of Tennessee said Americans are sick and tired of Big Tech's double standards. "Woke cancel culture strikes again, and the double standard couldn't be more evident. When will Facebook ban Chinese Communist Party propagandists who have been covering up COVID-19's origins and the genocide against the Uyghurs in Xinjiang?" Green said, according to the NY Post.
Trump personally targeted Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in his statement, saying he and and his wife will not be entertained at the White House if he returns to power. "Next time I'm in the White House there will be no more dinners, at his request, with Mark Zuckerberg and his wife. It will be all business!"