Facebook Apologizes for Banning Franklin Graham Over 2016 “Hate Speech”

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Facebook has issued an apology over its 24-hour ban the week before Christmas of popular Christian evangelist Franklin Graham for his supposed breach of the social media site’s “hate speech” standards way back in 2016.

Graham took to Facebook December 28 to exhort the social media platform over its penchant for censoring Facebook sites with content that challenge politically correct ideologies with unabashed conservative and Christian perspective. “I was banned from posting on Facebook last week for 24 hours,” Graham explained. “Why? Because of a post from back in 2016 about North Carolina’s House Bill 2 (the bathroom bill). Facebook said the post went against their ‘community standards on hate speech.’”

Graham went on to charge that “Facebook is trying to define truth. There was a character in a movie a few years back who said, ‘The truth is what I say it is!’ That’s what Facebook is trying to do. They’re making the rules and changing the rules. Truth is truth. God made the rules and His Word is truth. Actually, Facebook is censoring free speech. The free exchange of ideas is part of our country’s DNA.”

The evangelist then defiantly re-published the original post from April 9, 2016 that drew the Facebook ban two years after the fact. The post notes how busy-body rock musician Bruce Springsteen, described by Graham as a “a long-time gay rights activist,” had cancelled a concert in North Carolina in protest over the state’s recently passed law banning “transgender” men from using women’s restroom and locker facilities. Springsteen had complained that the common-sense measure was causing the state to go “backwards instead of forwards.”

Declared Graham in his “hate speech” post: “Well, to be honest, we need to go back! Back to God. Back to respecting and honoring His commands. Back to common sense. Mr. Springsteen, a nation embracing sin and bowing at the feet of godless secularism and political correctness is not progress.”

Graham added that “I’m thankful North Carolina has a governor, Pat McCrory, and a lieutenant governor, Dan Forest, and legislators who put the safety of our women and children first! HB2 protects the safety and privacy of women and children and preserves the human rights of millions of faith-based citizens of this state.”

According to the Charlotte Observer, Facebook issued an apology for its action, with a spokesperson conceding that banning Graham and taking down the post were mistakes. Reported the paper: “A member of Facebook’s content review team — the team has 15,000 members — had mistakenly decided the post violated Facebook’s policy that bans ‘dehumanizing language’ and excluding people based on sexual orientation, race and other factors, according to the spokesperson and Facebook’s written policy.”

The Observer noted that “Facebook has restored the 2016 post and will apologize in a note to the administrator of Graham’s Facebook page, according to the Facebook spokesperson, who agreed to speak only on background, meaning without the spokesperson’s name.”

The paper observed that Graham’s December 28 Facebook post “drew a combined 75,000 likes and ‘angry-face’ and ‘wow’ emojis by Saturday afternoon, along with nearly 38,500 shares and 8,400 comments. The response was overwhelmingly in Graham’s favor; the Observer searched nearly a thousand of the comments by Saturday afternoon and found none opposed to his remarks.”

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