Quantcast
Connect with us

Trump refuses to join ‘unprecedented’ global effort to tackle racist extremism online

Published

on

Despite French president Emmanuel Macron’s best efforts on his April state visit, Trump has decided to withdraw the US from the Iran nuclear deal. The decision upends current US foreign policy. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

The White House announced Wednesday it will not join a global initiative, launched in the wake of a massacre in New Zealand two months ago, to tackle racist and extremist online content.

“By not standing alongside other world leaders to fight hate,” said the Southern Poverty Law Center in response, “President Trump has shown once again that he doesn’t understand the importance of white supremacy in fueling terrorism.”

ADVERTISEMENT

The Christchurch Call—which has the backing of 17 countries plus the European Commission and eight major tech companies including Twitter, Google, and Facebook—was launched Wednesday by New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and French President Emmanuel Macron.

The initiative comes exactly two months after the terrorist attack on worshipers at mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, in which a gunman who professed racist hatred against Muslims and immigrants livestreamed his slaughter of  51 people.

“This attack was part of a horrifying new trend that seems to be spreading around the world,” Ardern wrote in an op-ed at the New York Times last week. “It was designed to be broadcast on the internet.”

She denounced the “staggering” scale of the video’s reach:

Original footage of the livestream was viewed some 4,000 times before being removed from Facebook. Within the first 24 hours, 1.5 million copies of the video had been taken down from the platform. There was one upload per second to YouTube in the first 24 hours.”

ADVERTISEMENT

The right to free expression, she wrote, “does not include the freedom to broadcast mass murder.”

Ending that threat, she added, necessitates collaboration—thus the Christchurch Call.

It calls on “governments and private corporations to prevent the posting of terrorist content online, to remove it quickly when it does appear, and to prevent the use of live-streaming to broadcast violence,” as the Irish Times reported.

ADVERTISEMENT

The Trump administration gave the initiative a hard pass.

While saying it supported the call’s “overall goals,” the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy said in a release that “the best tool to defeat terrorist speech is productive speech, and thus we emphasize the importance of promoting credible, alternative narratives as the primary means by which we can defeat terrorist messaging.”

ADVERTISEMENT

In the wake the Christchurch attacks, Ardern’s government passed a ban on military-style semiautomatic weapons—a move praised by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY).

“Sandy Hook happened six years ago and we can’t even get the Senate to hold a vote on universal background checks w/ #HR8,” the freshman congresswoman tweeted at the time. “Christchurch happened, and within days New Zealand acted to get weapons of war out of the consumer market.”

The inaction has Ardern scratching her head.

ADVERTISEMENT

Speaking to CNN‘s Christiane Amanpour, Ardern said this week: “Australia experienced a massacre and changed their laws. New Zealand had its experience and changed its laws. To be honest, I do not understand the United States.”


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

MSNBC’s Morning Joe fears US cannot survive four more years of Trump’s ‘fascist instincts’

Published

on

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough called out President Donald Trump's "fascist instincts" and worried that democratic institutions could not survive a second term.

The "Morning Joe" host was alarmed by the president's latest racist attacks at a Pennsylvania rally, and panelist Jason Johnson said Germans warned him in 2016 that Trump reminded them of Adolf Hitler.

"I was across the ocean and had Germans saying, 'I can't believe you Americans don't see that this is coming,'" Johnson said, "and I think the most worrisome part that I have to say in all of this is, you're right, yeah, there were people who called it out, Black people, Latinos, Asians who called it out. I think it took too long for many members of the press to accept that, and people who were saying it in 2015 were sometimes called, you know, you're being hyperbolic, you're using extreme language, it won't get that bad, other people will keep him in control, and that's why we are where we are today."

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

GOP senator’s hyped report on Biden and Ukraine is a dud with ‘minimal, if any, evidence’: reporter

Published

on

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) has been hyping up a report that purportedly implicates Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in corrupt activities in Ukraine.

But according to Politico's Kyle Cheney, Johnson's report is not going to be nearly as explosive as Republicans hoped, and he describes it as "an 87-page rehash of previously known allegations (with minimal, if any, evidence), news articles and impeachment testimony."

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

DHS gave millions to firm that employs wife of Trump’s acting secretary Chad Wolf

Published

on

The Department of Homeland Security in recent years has awarded contracts with over $6 million to Berkeley Research Group, a firm that happens to employ the wife of acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf.

NBC News reports that DHS started awarding the contracts to Berkeley Research Group in September 2018, when Wolf was serving as chief of staff to former DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

NBC News also reports that "although the company has a long history of federal contracts, it did not do work for DHS until after Wolf" started working at the Transport Security Administration, a DHS agency.

Continue Reading
 
 
Democracy is in peril. Invest in progressive news. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free. LEARN MORE