A federal judge has ordered Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) to testify in court over a lawsuit against her for blocking Twitter followers, the Daily Caller reported. Brooklyn Federal Judge Frederic Block asked for the congresswoman’s testimony after hearing other witnesses in the case.
“I think she has to testify,” the judge said of the suit, which was brought by a former Brooklyn assemblyman who was blocked by Ocasio-Cortez after he challenged her tweets comparing migrant detention facilities to concentration camps. “Her point is that this was an A-OK thing to do … she has to explain.”
Dov Hikind argues in the suit that his First Amendment rights have been violated by Ocasio-Cortez. A similar case against President Donald Trump found it unconstitutional for him to block Twitter followers.
Judges in the 2nd Circuit said that Twitter was a public forum and that the First Amendment applies to it. Lawyers in the case against Ocasio-Cortez have argued that her case is different, however, because she is representing one district and Trump is president of the entire United States. It’s always different when Democrats do something, right?
Another argument that has been offered in the case is whether there’s a difference between Ocasio-Cortez’s official Twitter account and her personal one. Hikind’s lawyers have argued that Ocasio-Cortez has posted policy-oriented items on her personal account, so the distinction shouldn’t apply.
On the one hand, Twitter is a public forum. On the other hand, though, it allows seemingly limitless harassment to take place for any reason or no reason. In non-digital public forums, people can leave the area or require a permit to demonstrate, but the ability to block harassers from posting on a profile is the only way to handle harassing speech reasonably on a digital forum.
I think the judges got it wrong with Trump’s case, and that Ocasio-Cortez should also be allowed to block Twitter users that she considers harassing. But the rules that now apply to Trump should also apply to her. She’s not special because she’s a Democrat.
Hypocrisy on display
The fact that Ocasio-Cortez seems to honestly think she should have the right to block Twitter followers but that Trump should not is one of the major problems with the left in this country today. When the rules are not applied fairly, it violates everything the Constitution of the United States stands for.
If Ocasio-Cortez were the only one so blatantly hypocritical, I could chalk it up to her being an entitled millennial. But just this week, it was pointed out that the same Democrats trying to impeach Trump over asking Ukraine’s president to look into Joe Biden wrote a letter to Ukraine asking that nation not to close investigations that they thought were going to hurt Trump.
Not to mention that the phone call on which they are basing their so-called impeachment inquiry contained allegations that Joe Biden had done the very thing they want to accuse Trump of. And that there’s more evidence that Biden did what was claimed than there is that Trump did anything wrong.
Democrats should be careful about how they position themselves on these issues. Americans as a whole don’t like hypocrisy.