On Twitter, no one is safe. Two weeks back, Twitter suspended the Heritage Foundation’s director of media, Greg Scott. On Friday, the social media company suspended radio host, Resurgent founder, and former RedState editor-in-chief Erick Erickson — for a joke tweet about 2020 Democrat Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).
“Elizabeth Warren set to introduce the Wrecking American Prosperity Under Marxism, or WAMPUM Act, wherein she gives everything away for free,” Erickson tweeted, in a clear dig at Warren’s support for big government programs aimed at alleviating poverty that would undermine America’s free market.
Twitter didn’t get the joke. The social media platform blocked Erickson for allegedly “violating our rules against hateful conduct.” The company added, “you may not promote violence against, threaten, or harass other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability, or serious disease.”
Such restatements of Twitter’s policy do not explain how the alleged offender actually “violated” the policy. Instead, companies like Twitter are expressly vague so that they can apply their policies as broadly and selectively as possible.
In a response to PJ Media, Erick Erickson acknowledged that Twitter is a private company, but he did call out the company for its apparent bias against conservatives.
“I think Twitter is a private company and can do what it wants, but I think Twitter also clearly is more predisposed to punish conservatives than progressives,” Erickson said. ” It’s somewhat ironic that they did this today about the time Elizabeth Warren was, again, having to revisit that controversy.”
Indeed, earlier on Friday, Warren appeared on the radio show The Breakfast Club, and co-host Charlamagne tha God pressed her on her DNA test fiasco.
“You’re kind of like the original Rachel Dolezal, a little bit. Rachel Dolezal was a white woman pretending to be black,” the co-host said. This was an incredibly clever quip, as Dolezal is a white woman who identified herself as black, and Warren is a white woman who identified herself as Native American, and arguably got ahead in her career through this posing.
As the 2020 Democratic presidential campaign was getting started, Warren took a DNA test and published the results — 0.18 percent Native American. The Cherokee Nation attacked Warren, saying “a DNA test is useless to determine tribal citizenship.”
Warren’s attempt to pose as Native America is an eminently mockable fact, and Erick Erickson was not “harassing” her with his joke tweet. Sadly, while Twitter blocks Greg Scott and Erick Erickson, the company still has not responded to PJ Media’s inquiries as to whether Pennsylvania State Rep. Brian Sims violated Twitter’s rules by harassing pro-life women or whether actor Jim Carrey violated Twitter’s rules when he depicted Gov. Kay Ivey (R-Ala.) getting killed in an abortion.
Twitter really needs to explain itself.
Follow Tyler O’Neil, the author of this article, on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.