Accusations by a growing number of members of the so-called conservative media about how their free speech rights are being denied by media giants like Google and Facebook are increasing in intensity, with Donald “Fake News” Trump cheerleading them along the way.
Social Media is totally discriminating against Republican/Conservative voices. Speaking loudly and clearly for the Trump Administration, we won’t let that happen. They are closing down the opinions of many people on the RIGHT, while at the same time doing nothing to others…….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 18, 2018
One of these so-called conservative voices is Salem Radio’s Dennis Prager, who produces a video series on YouTube under the banner of Prager University (aka PragerU). Prager is suing Google, the parent company of YouTube, for allegedly violating his First Amendment right to free speech by restricting a portion of his content.
Dennis Prager is not only constitutionally illiterate, he’s a Trumpist and a hypocrite to boot.
The facts are Google is NOT violating Prager’s freedom of speech because the First Amendment is a constraint on government, not the free market or private publications. This fact was pointed out last week in a hearing before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit by George W. Bush appointee Judge Jay Bybee.
Prager’s contention that YouTube is a “public forum” protected by the First Amendment fails the constitutional test because YouTube isn’t a government entity, nor is the government involved in any way with its content.
As if his constitutional ignorance wasn’t bad enough on its own, Prager’s bogus lawsuit shows us the depths of his Trumpism and hypocrisy.
In the early days of his presidency, Trump blasted the news media for using “unnamed sources & highly slanted & even fraudulent reporting” when covering the Russia investigation and accused them of “DISTORTING DEMOCRACY.”
With all of its phony unnamed sources & highly slanted & even fraudulent reporting, #Fake News is DISTORTING DEMOCRACY in our country!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 16, 2017
A few days prior to Trump’s tweet — a coincidence, I’m sure — Prager sent out a tweet of his own stating that “The news media in the West pose a far greater danger to Western civilization than Russia does.”
The news media in the West pose a far greater danger to Western civilization than Russia does.
— Dennis Prager (@DennisPrager) July 14, 2017
And just to make sure there was no misunderstanding, in an interview with Trump’s morning intel team (Fox & Friends) to discuss his tweet, Prager doubled-down on his Trump-esque claim that the media is more dangerous than Putin.
By the way, Prager’s Trumpist attitude and hypocrisy has become standard operating procedure for the talking heads at Salem Media Group. Salem radio executives have pressured radio hosts to cover Trump more positively for years and has become so pro-Trump that their radio empire has essentially become the Trump Radio Network.
Anti-conservative bias in the media is real and expected, but that doesn’t make it unconstitutional; a so-called conservative like Dennis Prager should know that. However, in the Age of Trump where conservative values are negotiable, the Constitution is secondary to gaining a seat at Trump’s table.
David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative.
His daily radio commentary is distributed by the Salem Radio Network and is heard on stations across America.