National pro-life groups Live Action and Susan B. Anthony List released a joint statement today, urging Twitter to end its unfair censorship of pro-life advertising.
Twitter has long banned Live Action from advertising, and it received backlash from Americans after it shut down Rep. Marsha Blackburn’s ad referencing Planned Parenthood’s baby parts scandal. Although Twitter retracted its position on Blackburn’s campaign ad, Live Action is still prohibited from advertising. Live Action President Lila Rose is calling on Twitter to end the censorship.
“Twitter was wrong to censor Rep. Blackburn’s ads, and only did the right thing when they were subjected to media scrutiny,” Rose said. “Twitter must now lift the ban on similar advertising from Live Action and SBA List. Twitter has significant power as a media channel to influence public opinion, and just as with Representative Blackburn, they have no business silencing the pro-life voice.”
Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser is also urging Twitter to permit pro-life organizations the same freedom to advertise that abortion groups enjoy.
“We are encouraged that Twitter reconsidered its censorship of Rep. Blackburn’s pro-life ad. However, the root issue is far from resolved. It took pressure and a great deal of negative publicity for Twitter to reverse this one decision,” Dannenfelser said. “Meanwhile pro-life groups like Live Action and SBA List are still subject to an apparent double standard when they simply tell the truth, horrific as it is, about Planned Parenthood’s baby parts trafficking. If Planned Parenthood – the nation’s largest abortion business, mired in scandal – is free to promote its agenda on this social media platform, pro-lifers should be equally free to expose the tremendous harm of that agenda to unborn children and their mothers.”
On Monday, Live Action released a statement calling for Twitter to end its ban on the organization’s pro-life advertising following Twitter’s decision to end their censorship of Rep. Blackburn’s ad. Noting Twitter’s claim that they are in favor of free speech, Rose said:
Twitter’s suppression of the pro-life viewpoint flies in the face of their claim that ‘Fighting against censorship and for free expression is ingrained in Twitter’s DNA’.
Twitter called Blackburn’s reference to Planned Parenthood’s fetal parts trafficking “an inflammatory statement that is likely to evoke a strong negative reaction.” Blackburn responded by inviting her followers to share the video and help her fight back against the censorship. Twitter then backed down and agreed to allow the advertisement.
However, Twitter has refused to reinstate Live Action’s advertising right unless it deletes content from its own website, including information calling for the defunding of Planned Parenthood. Rose calls the ban extremely biased since Twitter has accepted advertising from Planned Parenthood which commits the majority of abortions in the United States. Rose noted that the first amendment guarantees the right of free expression, and since social media gives groups the ability to reach hundreds of millions of people each day, it has the potential to influence the public even more than television advertising.
“Now, it’s time for Twitter to lift its unprecedented ban on Live Action’s life-affirming advertising,” said Rose. “Some of the Live Action content that Twitter objected to was identical to the content Ms. Blackburn’s now-permitted advertising, so there’s no longer a rational basis for it to ban Live Action’s ads.”