Twitter locked Rep. Vicky Hartzler’s (R-MO) personal Twitter account for a tweet denouncing transgender athletes’ participation in women’s sports.
Hartzler tweeted: “Women’s Sports are for Women, not men pretending to be women,” according to a screenshotTwittered by her campaign manger Michael Haufner. A Twitter spokesperson told MRC Free Speech America that Hartzler’s tweet violated the platform’s “hateful conduct” rules. Twitter locked her accountThe platform was blocked to Hartzler until the Tweet is deleted. Hartzler is running for Senate and her campaign condemned the censorship in a statement calling it “shameful, utterly ridiculous, and a horrible abuse of censorship by big tech giants to stifle free speech.”
The statement also challenged Twitter’s content moderation priorities: “Vladimir Putin is a murderous psychopath who invaded a sovereign nation causing death and destruction and is currently allowed to tweet,” read the statement. “Yet, Twitter believes the bigger threat is a senior member of the House Armed Services Committee saying women’s sports are for women.”
The offending tweet is a line from a Hartzler campaign ad addressing the issue of transgender athletes in women’s sports. Hartzler’s advertisement referred to University of Pennsylvania transgender athletic Lia Thomas. In the advertisement, Lia Thomas claimed that she is No. 1 in women’s swimming, while William Thomas was ranked No. 462 on the men’s swimming team.
Twitter had allowed Hartzler comments on Twitter before. February 14 tweetHartzler also included the video ad, and used language Twitter found offensive. Hartzler was eventually forced to lock her account.
The Twitter spokesperson said Hartzler’s tweet “violated the Twitter Rules on hateful conduct” and that she “will need to delete the violative Tweet and spend 12 hours in read-only mode before regaining full access to [her] account.” The spokesperson further explained that “[p]We prohibit the use of repeated slurs or tropes that target others to reinforce or dehumanize negative stereotypes regarding a protected group. This applies toTargeted misgendering and deadnaming transgender people”
Hartzler wrote on Facebook in response to losing her Twitter account. “Twitter says I can’t speak the truth on their platform- well, they can just have their account back!” she said. “I won’t delete my tweet, and I will keep speaking the truth! Women’s sports are for women, not men pretending to be women.”
Big Tech cracked down last year on comments criticizing transgender issues. A MRC CensorTrack survey, which was conducted between Jan and Nov 2021, found 100 cases of Big Tech censoring users who only affirm two genders.
Conservatives under attack Contact your representatives and demand that Big Tech be held to account to mirror the First Amendment while providing transparency, clarity on “hate speech” and equal footing for conservatives. Contact us at CensorTrack if you feel your voice has been blocked. Use the contact formPlease help us make Big Tech more accountable.