Sen. Rand Paul is fuming after YouTube censored the second one of his videos for violating community guidelines on COVID-19 and suspended him from posting more videos for a week.
“They are now banning all my speech, including speech that is given on the Senate floor, which is protected constitutional,” the Kentucky Republican senator told reporters on Tuesday. “YouTube now thinks they are smart enough and godly enough that they can oversee speech, even constitutionally protected speech.”
YouTube last week removed a video of an interview the Kentucky Republican senator did on Newsmax.
Paul discussed his suspicions about the origins of the coronavirus, his feud with Anthony Fauci over what funding for research in China’s Wuhan lab came from the United States, and argued that most face coverings do not help stop the spread of the virus.
Paul, an eye doctor, then recorded, and on Aug. 3 uploaded, a second video chastising YouTube for taking down the video and promoted one of its competitors, Rumble. He defended his comments on masks.
“Saying cloth masks work, when they don’t, actually risks lives, as someone may choose to care for a loved one with COVID while only wearing a cloth mask. This is not only bad advice but also potentially deadly misinformation,” Paul said in the video.
YouTube responded by taking down that video as well, saying that it violated YouTube’s community guidelines. On Tuesday, Paul’s office said that the company imposed a seven-day ban from posting more videos.
YouTube did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
This is not the first time Paul has faced censorship from YouTube. In 2019, the company took down a video that the senator uploaded in which he mentioned on the Senate floor the name of the alleged whistleblower, whose concern about former President Donald Trump’s call with the Ukrainian president led to his first impeachment.
Paul acknowledged that YouTube, as a private company, has a right to ban them if they want to but said that YouTube is acting as “an arm of the government without any repercussions or push back.”
“It is really anti-free speech, anti-progress of science, which involves skepticism and argumentation to arrive at the truth,” Paul said. “YouTube and Google, though, have become an entity so huge that they think they are the arbitrator of truth.”
He advocated for using alternatives to YouTube, such as Rumble. “My hope is that maybe through competition, we’ll prove them to be wrong in their ways,” Paul said.
Author : Emily Brooks
Source : Washington Examiner : YouTube takes down second Rand Paul COVID video and suspends him from posting for a week