Clay Calvert Comments on Social Media Blocking and the First Amendment
Clay Calvert, director of the Marion B. Brechner First Amendment Project at the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications, was quoted in “Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Says She Has the Right to Block Critics on Social Media – A Court Ruling Against Trump Suggests She Might Not” published in Business Insider on Aug. 31.
The article features Democratic Rep. Ocasio-Cortez’s efforts to block people on Twitter who have criticized or harassed her.
According to Calvert, “To the extent that the Congresswoman is blocking people based on their negative viewpoints about her, no matter how offensive or disagreeable they may be, that clearly amounts to precisely the kind of unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination by a government official that the appellate court deemed wrong in the case against Donald Trump. Unless hateful speech rises to a true threat of violence or amounts to fighting words, it is going to be protected under the First Amendment.”