On Tuesday, the House Energy and Commerce Committee confirmed that it is reviewing Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s testimony before the committee in September after the social media company suspended a Marine combat veteran and explicitly endorsed the political stance of support for transgender activism in its “hateful conduct” policy.
“The committee is aware of Twitter’s actions and is currently reviewing Mr. Dorsey’s testimony,” a committee spokesperson told PJ Media, confirming the news first reported by the Federalist’s Sean Davis.
The spokesman did not explicitly name which Twitter actions inspired the search, or which Dorsey statements most merit scrutiny. Davis suggested the committee was responding to questions about Twitter’s suspension of Jesse Kelly — a Marine combat veteran, writer, and radio show host — and its Orwellian redefinition of opposition to transgender identity as “hateful conduct.”
The Federalist’s Ben Domenech reported on Monday that Dorsey gave false statements about Twitter’s response to death threats against prominent conservatives and about whether or not Twitter policies discriminated against users based on their politics.
Davis focused on a few specific statements the Twitter CEO delivered in the September hearing:
“I want to start by making something very clear,” Dorsey testified on September 5, 2018. “We don’t consider political viewpoints, perspectives, or party affiliation in any of our policies or enforcement decisions, period.”
“Our policies and our algorithms don’t take into consideration any affiliation, philosophy, or viewpoint,” Dorsey claimed again later in the hearing.
Yet Twitter’s new “hateful conduct” policy condemns “targeted misgendering or dead naming of transgender individuals.” This may not seem an ideological or political viewpoint, but it definitely is.
“Misgendering” involves referring to a person who identifies as transgender by the appropriate pronoun of their biological sex. The term “dead name” refers to the name a transgender person was given at birth, after that person has rejected that name for a new one. As Eric Weinstein pointed out on Twitter, this would make it impossible to explain a transgender person’s history.
Lesbian veteran Miriam Ben-Shalom denounced Twitter’s move as Orwellian, telling PJ Media that the social media company “has drunk the Kool-Aid and actively engages in suppression of thought and civil discourse, allowing only the words of those who are delusional, at best.”
Arbitrarily defining “misgendering” and the use of “dead names” as “hateful conduct” involves a rejection of the scientific basis of biological sex in favor of a partisan ideological movement. Worse, it involves endorsing a movement that has made women and girls vulnerable to biological men in female-only spaces and has encouraged young people to mutilate their bodies in search of a new identity. Many pediatricians have denounced this as child abuse.
Such a blatant endorsement of transgender identity is entirely political, as Sean Davis noted. This may not prove that Jack Dorsey lied to Congress in September (before the transgender policy went into effect), but it certainly casts a pall on his claims that his company is politically neutral.
The committee spokesman told PJ Media that Twitter “has not yet provided responses to members’ questions for the record, despite an October 15th deadline. It is important that Congress receive this requested information to ensure we are able to properly perform our oversight responsibilities.”
“We believe Twitter and other tech companies should be forthright with Congress and the American people in an effort to shed light on often opaque rules and processes,” the committee spokesman insisted. “Transparency and trust are essential components of our increasingly digital communication channels.”
Twitter has a great deal to answer for.
Follow the author of this article on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.