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Freedom Truckers v. GoFundMe Leftists

Posted on Wednesday, February 9, 2022
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by Outside Contributor
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When GoFundMe shut down funding Friday for the truckers’ Freedom Convoy, it didn’t just clobber Canadian rig drivers; it dealt a blow to the rights of Americans. Silicon Valley executives are trying to limit the causes Americans support, favoring leftists and canceling conservatives.

We Americans have a constitutionally protected right to donate money to whatever causes we choose, the Supreme Court ruled in Buckley v. Valeo. Money funds political activity, and limiting where we can donate is like gagging our speech.

Canadian truckers launched a convoy to Ottawa last month to protest Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s vaccine mandate on all rig drivers. Never mind the absurdity of requiring a truck driver alone behind the wheel for 18 hours a day to be vaccinated.

The convoy set up a fundraising site on GoFundMe to pay for fuel, food, and lodging. Many Americans rushed to support it. It had reached $10 million in donations when GoFundMe pulled the plug.

Nearly one-quarter of Americans donate on crowdfunding sites, according to Pew Research. GoFundMe is the largest. It’s the public square for fundraising, and it should be open to all, regardless of their politics.

Yet GoFundMe shuts down fundraising for causes the left doesn’t like. That’s as dangerous to our democracy as when other Silicon Valley tech giants like Facebook and Twitter silence viewpoints.

The Freedom Convoy reached Ottawa Jan. 29 and has clogged the city’s streets with 18-wheelers and demonstrators calling for health care freedom and an end to overreaching government COVID mandates.

GoFundMe claims it shut down the truckers because of “reports of violence and other unlawful activity” violating the company’s terms of service.

That’s a joke. Even CNN reports “no bloodshed” has occurred. The New York Times concedes the worst is snarled traffic and blaring truck horns.

As of Friday evening, when GoFundMe permanently shut the site down, there had been only three arrests despite thousands protesting. As of Sunday, police-reported more arrests and investigations, but the number is still minuscule overall. Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson’s biggest complaint is that the truckers are showing “insensitivity” by creating noise and “turning it into a party.”

Compare that with the mayhem and violence in Portland, Oregon, in 2020. Truth is, GoFundMe had no problem with that disorder. The site raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for the Portland General Defense Committee to defend rioters who set fire to police stations, vandalized city hall, wielded weapons, and injured police officers.

Even now, GoFundMe is raising money for Black Lives Matter NYC to engage in “civil disobedience and disruption.” GoFundMe likes BLM’s brand of civil disobedience.

The framers of the Constitution banned the government from censoring, but they didn’t anticipate Big Tech. Democrats are happy to deputize Silicon Valley lefties to muzzle the deplorables and prevent an exchange of ideas. And money.

Democrats in Congress insist Big Tech should stamp out “misinformation.” Trudeau slammed the truckers for spreading “misinformation.”

Who decides what’s misinformation? Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. said the “best test of truth” is whether it survives in “the competition of the market.” Silicon Valley is snuffing out competition.

There are two remedies. The first is for Congress to regulate Big Tech like public utilities or common carriers, compelling them to serve all customers without viewpoint discrimination. Water companies and railroads can’t deny service to customers with unpopular opinions. Big Tech should operate by the same rules.

Unfortunately, such legislation is unlikely to pass. About half of Democratic members’ stock holdings are in Big Tech, compared with only 14% for Republicans.

The second remedy is the Supreme Court. It’s possible the majority will limit Big Tech censorship when a case arises.

In April 2021, Justice Clarence Thomas warned, in a concurring opinion, that the CEOs of the social media giants — a mere handful of executives — have the power to exclude even a president of the United States from the digital public square.

Thomas appears poised to rule that the First Amendment bans 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 has to be stopped.

Betsy McCaughey is a former lieutenant governor of New York. Follow her on Twitter @Betsy_McCaughey.

COPYRIGHT 2022 CREATORS.COM

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Max
Max
2 years ago

Another situation where secular “freedom” sites want to get donations to use for other means supporting them and not for the cause that are falsely advertising for. You need to check out these sites before giving a donation.

PaulE
PaulE
2 years ago

The truckers have since setup another donation page on a competing company’s web site. As for GoFundMe, they routinely make their stance of supporting the agenda of the left known. This is not the first instance where they have attempted to hijack funds meant for a good cause and divert them to leftist organizations. Of course GoFundMe should be avoided at all costs.

D
D
2 years ago

Never forget, GFM also shutdown money to defend Kyle Rittenhouse.

Margaret
Margaret
2 years ago

Please don’t use GoFundMe. If a charity you want to donate to does please ask them to move to a different donation site.

Stephen Russell
Stephen Russell
2 years ago

Use Give Send Go.
& to see convoy hit LA Super Bowl game, Hoorah

anna hubert
anna hubert
2 years ago

They’ve stood up to little Castro he and his junta are not used to it Ottawa mayor is talking about the protest turning inro a party I hope he meant a political one

FedUp
FedUp
2 years ago

Go Fund Me’s refusal to provide funds donated for the truckers, to the truckers is essentially the same as white collar theft. $10m in theft to be more specific. I’m hoping somebody in the truckers movement files theft charges against all the Go Fund Me executives.

JohnC
JohnC
2 years ago

Yes use “GiveSendGo.com” for the truckers, I did.

James Thompson
James Thompson
2 years ago

The name says it all! go fund ME!!!!!!!

Laynee8
Laynee8
2 years ago

Thanks for this well-written, informative article!

Tim Toroian
Tim Toroian
2 years ago

GFM should be closed and management barred from ever participating in such a venture in the future. There should be legislation requiring such organizations to be neutral, funnel money to rioters but not nonviolent demonstrators, or to a defendant found not guilty. Who the hell do they think they are, the American and Canadian governments?

SteveL
SteveL
2 years ago

Why is no one talking about the harm being done to 370 MILLION people by these truckers acerbating the supply chain problems caused by Covid? I support their desire to have a choice regarding vaccines but I do not and will not support their methods!

Kelli
Kelli
2 years ago

GoFundMe should be charged with extortion!!

Gerald Sullivan
Gerald Sullivan
2 years ago

Sounds like go fund me shut down the money for the trucker strike in order to use that money or something else.

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