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Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. – The First Amendment to the United States Constitution
The Framers wrote the Constitution at a time when state churches were central to a nation’s identity. A state church gives an official answer to the most important questions about human existence. The First Amendment doesn’t (or shouldn’t) just stop the government from silencing us. It also implicitly bars the government from forcing us to accept an official view of reality. The Framers thought liberty of conscience was more important than unity of belief. This was a radical view then and remains so today. The First Amendment probably couldn’t be passed now.
Early in American history, the First Amendment was tested by the Alien and Sedition Acts. The Alien Act gave the president more power to deport potentially dangerous foreigners. The Sedition Act made it a crime to print or say “any false, scandalous, and malicious writing” about the government. President John Adams supported these laws because he wanted to prevent a war with France. Vice President Thomas Jefferson was so disgusted by the acts he proposed nullification. The acts’ unpopularity probably contributed to Jefferson’s victory in 1800. They expired, having never been examined by the Supreme Court.
The Court may get another chance. The Department of Homeland Security, now presiding over a wave of illegal immigration that has driven America’s foreign-born population to a record 46.6 million people, has set up a “Disinformation Governance Board.” It represents a new kind of Sedition Act. Among the foreign-born population is Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas. During recent testimony before Congress, the secretary replied to three questions from black Congresswoman Lauren Underwood (D-IL).
Republicans and even the left-libertarian Reason magazine have heavily criticized the new department, and the Biden administration seems embarrassed. The day after the Secretary’s testimony, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki seemed ill-prepared to explain the board’s purpose and had no information about Miss Jankowicz. “It sounds like the objective of the board is to prevent disinformation and misinformation from traveling around the country in a range of communities,” she said. “I’m not sure who opposes that.”
Many people do, not least because the Executive Director herself appears to be guilty of spreading misinformation. During the Black Lives Matter riots of 2020, Nina Jankowicz was worried about “police aggression against protesters.” She suggested there was massive Russian interference in the 2016 election. She promoted Christopher Steele, author of a dossier with false information that prompted an FBI investigation into President Trump. She dismissed Hunter Biden’s laptop as a “Trump campaign product.” She later implied that American intelligence thought it could be a Russian influence operation. The Washington Examiner reports that her view was not supported by evidence.
The Biden Administration is making the situation worse. Secretary Mayorkas claimed Miss Jankowicz would be “absolutely” politically neutral, though he did concede, “I think we probably could have done a better job in communicating what it [the disinformation board] does and does not do.”
The fight against supposed misinformation has already begun. The DHS has resources, fact sheets, and infographics that tell you to rely on “official websites and verified social media for authoritative information.” This implies a government-sanctioned seal of approval.
The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, set up under Donald Trump within the DHS, publishes graphic novels about the war on disinformation. In one called Bug Bytes, “readers follow protagonist Ava, a graduate, who uses her wits and journalism skills to uncover a disinformation campaign set to damage Fifth Generation (5G) critical communications infrastructure in the United States.” She works to expose donors to “anti-vaccination groups,” notably by ambushing an online commentator who foolishly agrees to her request for an interview. She lures him in by telling him to “think of this as an exclusive opportunity to share your views with a wide audience.” Eventually, she uncovers that a man “tied to the anti-vaccination petition and links to foreign backers” was trying to burn down 5G towers.
Ava goes on to get a National Journalism Award, suggesting that DHS considers mainstream press an ally. Nina Jankowicz supports doxxers Brandy Zadrozny and Taylor Lorenz, who recently doxxed the Libs of TikTok Twitter account with help from a researcher who may have been funded indirectly by the German government.
What is this new board supposed to do? When asked, the Secretary waffled, but finally gave an answer:
[I]it works to ensure that the way in which we address threats, the connectivity between threats and acts of violence are addressed without infringing on free speech, protecting civil rights and civil liberties, the right of privacy. And the board, this working group, internal working group, will draw from best practices and communicate those best practices to the operators, [emphasis added] because the board does not have operational authority.
Who are “the operators?” The Secretary won’t say. In the article linked above, National Review suggests that it’s the social media companies, but seems puzzled about what DHS would tell them to do. We’re not. DHS already told us.
Acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan under Donald Trump openly said in 2019 that the department pressures social media companies to censor people the agency doesn’t like. In 2021, the White House pressured social media companies to ban the “disinformation dozen,” who were allegedly spreading false information about COVID-19. How were these people identified? In a report from the “Center for Countering Digital Hate,” whose remit now apparently extends to medicine. The White House also pressured Spotify to do “more” about Joe Rogan when he questioned certain aspects of the government’s COVID-19 story. Former president Barack Obama recently gave a speech calling for more social media regulation.
June 11, 2019 – Acting Secretary of the United States Department of Homeland Security Kevin McAleenan testifies before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. (Credit Image: © Stefani Reynolds / CNP via ZUMA Wire)
The DHS Secretary claims his Department doesn’t monitor Americans. Perhaps. However, the Office Of National Intelligence found that in 2021, the FBI conducted 3.4 million data searches in the United States without warrants. Most were supposedly of alleged Russian and other foreign hackers.
Tucker Carlson critiqued this new DHS board and its executive director.
“So today to herald the coming of the new Soviet America, the Administration announced it’s own Ministry of Truth. This will be called the ‘Disinformation Governance Board.'”
The New York Times may want you to believe Mr. Carlson gets ideas from American Renaissance, but, like other critics, he didn’t mention that we found out about this board because of race. This isn’t just about free speech. It’s about race and who the DHS considers a threat.
Please recall that the secretary confirmed to Rep. Underwood that white supremacists are still the biggest threat facing “the homeland” today. This claim doesn’t hold up. The latest terrorist was Black Identity Extremist Frank James, who shot up a New York subway. Before that, we had anti-white criminal Darrell Brooks running down the “Dancing Grannies” at the Waukesha Christmas parade. Recently, Black Lives Matter activist Quintez Brown, previously feted by MSNBC and the Obama Foundation, tried to assassinate Louisville mayoral candidate Craig Greenberg. He was bailed out by a local Black Lives Matter group. And let us not forget “Brother” Noah Green, whom the Nation of Islam mourned as a potential future “star,” after he was shot trying to kill Capitol Police officers.
April 13, 2022, New York City: Frank James is led by police from Ninth Precinct after being arrested for his connection to the mass shooting at the 36th St subway station. (Credit Image: © John Nacion / NurPhoto via ZUMA Press)
In contrast, the most recent prominent case of white extremists allegedly plotting a crime, the supposed kidnapping of Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, probably wouldn’t have happened without FBI enticement. A jury recently acquitted two men, while a mistrial was declared for two others. There are practically no whites on the FBI’s list of most wanted terrorists. The ADL, which recently changed its definition of racism, puts out useless reports on “extremist terrorism” that contain little to no evidence. Crime is rising, and it is committed disproportionately by blacks against whites.
What role does disinformation play in that? Doesn’t constant harping on white crimes, past and present, encourage blacks to resent whites?
The DHS consistently stresses that it is fighting disinformation from foreigners, even though the department imports foreigners. Two of three main features on the DHS’s website are for programs to import Afghans and Ukrainians. (The other one is about “climate change.”) Deportations by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, part of DHS, are down by 70 percent under the Biden Administration and the DHS is rewarding illegals with free smartphones.
Rep. Underwood may be guilty of spreading disinformation. In 2019, she suggested that Homeland Security may have been intentionally killing migrants. One might call this a conspiracy theory designed to inflame the “Spanish-speaking community.” Her comments that minorities specifically need to be protected from misinformation suggest that they can’t figure things out for themselves.
There’s an important difference between the Sedition Acts of the early republic and the de-facto Sedition regulations of our failing republic. John Adams was trying to prevent a war by cooling down rhetoric. The DHS is now promoting claims about Russian misinformation and the need to “Unite for Ukraine.” If America is so fragile that it must be guarded from foreign influence, it’s odd that the Executive Director of our new disinformation board has a Ukrainian flag in her Twitter bio. Ukraine may be a great country and its cause just, but the United States is not bound to it by treaty. Unlike President Adams, the DHS seems to be trying to get us into a war.
Furthermore, the fear that an enemy could take advantage of our own ethnic divisions is an admission that diversity is a weakness. Vice President Kamala Harris admitted during the 2020 campaign that “racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, homophobia, and transphobia are America’s Achilles heel.” She said these issues were a matter of “national security” because they could be exploited by foes. Rep. Underwood alluded in her recent testimony to disinformation that could target people of color and so “destabilize our elections.” Another DHS comic blaming Russia for “deepfakes” warns of foreigners using disinformation “to weaken and divide a society.” America’s own government has been doing a good job of that.
The new board seems to have little legal power. However, it can pressure “observers,” meaning social media companies, to ban certain people. It appears that it will be working with the media to eliminate some of their competitors. The executive director’s past shows a strong political bias and gullibility for fake news and leftist conspiracies.
Racial diversity and free speech may be incompatible. The alarmists at the DHS may think Russia is exploiting American racial and social divisions. However, those divisions were built by our own rulers. Setting up a “Disinformation Governance Board” won’t change the way the government behaves. It is an admission that it must use more force to keep our various “communities” from each other’s throats.
The government seems to be preparing to pressure social media companies and use the excuse of “foreign interference” to shut down speech it doesn’t like. The question is why the government now feels comfortable announcing this openly. Perhaps our rulers know that the media won’t just tolerate this process but encourage it.
The DHS, its Disinformation Governance Board, and the rest of the federal government want to shut down truthful speech. Jared Taylor and other dissidents were not purged from social media for telling lies or “trolling” but for calmly telling the truth. Promoting racial egalitarianism is misinformation. White privilege is a destructive conspiracy theory that encourages hatred for whites. I thank the Disinformation Governance Board for revealing the nature of this government so clearly.