Big Tech oligarchs in Silicon Valley are well-known for their liberal bias. Time and time again, they have banned conservatives from their platforms for the crime of speaking out against left-wing orthodoxy. Their censorship efforts have targeted journalists, local Republican officials, and even the forty-fifth President of the United States. The “mainstream media,” also noted for its liberal bias, does little to call out Big Tech’s attacks on free speech. There’s no question that these two institutions — Big Tech and the media — are squarely to the left of the American mainstream. Recently, they’ve been working together to suppress information about the origin and spread of COVID-19 in a stunning disservice to both the American public and truth itself.
In December 2019, the first cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in Hubei, China. Observers noted that the Wuhan Institute of Virology, a Chinese Communist Party-sponsored lab which researches coronaviruses, deserved scrutiny for any possible role in the arrival of the virus. There’s no reason not to pursue every lead in exploring COVID-19’s origins, particularly given the scale of its devastation coupled with the documented dishonesty of China’s totalitarian regime.
While those with common sense would agree, Facebook didn’t. In the early months of the pandemic, the Big Tech giant actively censored speculation about COVID-19 possibly leaking from this lab. The Chinese Communist Party couldn’t ask for a better public relations team than their allies in Silicon Valley, who eagerly leaped at the chance to stifle conversation about the biggest story in a generation.
Censoring political voices is bad enough, and Facebook has done so with such reckless abandon that they’ve drawn bipartisan criticism. There is added cause for concern when an unelected collection of Big Tech leaders shut down speculation about the deadliest pandemic in a century. Everyone has a right to discuss it freely — especially given that the virus just so happened to originate in China, a nation with a long history of human rights abuses, lying to the international community, and openly opposing American interests.
In recent weeks, Facebook has suddenly changed its tune: they’ve now deemed the lab-leak theory credible, generously allowing us common folk to debate its merits in the public square. What changed? Politics.
When Republican leaders like Senator Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) and President Trump pointed out that China deserved scrutiny for its possible role in unleashing COVID-19, Big Tech and the liberal media pounced. They labeled good-faith, honest attempts to get to the bottom of COVID-19’s origin as fact-free conspiracy theories. Now that Joe Biden faces pressure to investigate COVID’s origins and Anthony Fauci endures immense scrutiny for his past misleading comments, Facebook and the mainstream media are dutifully doing an about-face. A recent Washington Post headline read “Timeline: How the Wuhan lab-leak theory suddenly became credible.” I’ll save you the reading — it was always credible. The political winds just happened to shift.
In their leftward lurch, Big Tech and the mainstream media have progressed from propagating cancel culture to actively suppressing information about crucial global events. This is a trend that should concern every American regardless of party affiliation. The Republican Party remains committed to fighting left-wing censorship because we cannot allow unelected billionaires in Silicon Valley to suppress our public discourse.
Ronna McDaniel is the chairwoman of the Republican National Committee.
The views expressed in this opinion piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.