On Wednesday’s episode of the ABC talk show “The View,” cohost Sunny Hostin celebrated the news that Facebook is upholding its ban of former President Donald Trump from the social media platform. In defending the ban, Hostin went so far as to say that Trump is “still a public safety threat.”
“Facebook is a private company,” said Hostin, who is also a legal analyst for ABC. “That’s why they can make this kind of decision. I’m always very concerned, as an attorney, just as an American, of course, about free speech. I think you have to be very careful when you decide to take that ability away from someone.”
“That being said, the reason this happened to Trump is based on two posts that he posted during the insurrection, right, a real attack on our democracy,” she added. “One he told rioters, ‘we love you you’re very special.’ In another post, he called them ‘great patriots’ and told them to ‘remember this day forever.’ At the time, Facebook felt it was clear there was an immediate risk of harm and that his words of support for those involved in the riots legitimized their violent actions.”
“There has to be a balance between free speech and violence and free speech and public safety,” she continued. “That’s why that decision was made. 68% of Americans get their information from social media. They get their news from social media. So when you have someone like this, you know, former disgraced, one-term president, two-time impeached president disseminating this kind of misinformation, even though he is no longer president, there are so many people hanging on his every word I think he is still a public safety threat.”
“So in that sense, Facebook was a very effective fund-raising tool for him,” Hostin concluded. “I don’t think that now is the time to give him that megaphone back and give him the ability to perhaps harm public safety and harm this country.”
Hostin’s cohost Meghan McCain, however, wasn’t so sure that the ban was a good thing.
“As a general rule, just in life period, I like to know what my enemies are thinking and saying and doing, because then you can be more prepared,” McCain said.
“And just because he won’t be on Facebook — there’s a reason why places like 4chan and like the dark areas of the web exist and are very popular,” she continued. “It’s because they’re deplatformed other places. So just because we can’t see it in front of us, doesn’t mean it’s not there.”
FACEBOOK BOARD UPHOLDS TRUMP BAN: The co-hosts weigh in after Facebook’s Oversight Board voted Wednesday to uphold their ban on former Pres. Trump for the time being and question if he should be allowed back on the platform at some point. https://t.co/31tPrU4c97 pic.twitter.com/9XMjP7XQv2
— The View (@TheView) May 5, 2021