Saturday, June 29, 2013

Facebook bans Fox News' Todd Starnes over post supporting NRA, Paula Deen, Jesus

After posting a message on his fan page supporting the National Rifle Association, Paula Deen and Jesus Christ, Fox News' Todd Starnes found himself banned from the social media site and his post deleted, Fox News reported Saturday.

“I’m about as politically incorrect as you can get,” Starnes wrote on his Facebook page. “I’m wearing an NRA ball cap, eating a Chick-fil-A sandwich, reading a Paula Deen cookbook and sipping a 20-ounce sweet tea while sitting in my Cracker Barrel rocking chair with the Gather Vocal Band singing ‘Jesus Saves’ on the stereo and a Gideon’s Bible in my pocket. Yes sir, I’m politically incorrect and happy as a june bug.”

According to Starnes, the post went viral, generating hundreds of comments.

But Facebook claimed it violated their rules and standards.

“We removed this from Facebook because it violates our Community Standards,” Facebook told Starnes. “So you’re temporarily blocked from using this feature.”

Starnes said he was perplexed.

“Does Facebook have a bigger problem with Jesus or plump juicy chicken breasts?” he asked.

Facebook not only banned Starnes from posting, the site also prevented him from posting a daily Bible verse called “Morning Glory – Start Your Day Inspired.”

But after an outcry from fans and supporters, Facebook lifted the ban and apologized.

"They said one of their staff members 'accidentally' removed the posting," Starnes wrote on his page.

"'Accidentally on purpose', as my grandfather used to say!" one person responded on Facebook.

"Glad to be part of this God-fearing, Amercia-loving front porch!!"

A number of other Facebook users expressed support for Starnes and his message.

We reached out to Facebook earlier today for comment, but did not receive a reply.

As Starnes observed, this is not the first time Facebook has punished conservatives for little to no reason. Earlier this year, Facebook punished Florida blogger Diane Sori for a link to a beheading picture she never posted after applying a rule that holds all administrators responsible for what any administrator posts regardless of the circumstances.

Many other conservatives have been punished or banned for much less.

Twitchy noted the irony of Starnes' banning, considering the site permits pages calling for the murder of George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer on trial for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

As a result, over 125,000 have migrated to Tea Party Community, a Facebook-like alternative that gives conservatives a site where they can exercise free expression.

Other sites like Online Fiends and United Patriots have also sprung up, and a Facebook event calls on users to stay off the social media giant on Independence Day.


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