Fact-checkers have been given an enormous amount of authority over what news stays and what cannot be allowed to flourish on Facebook.
Pro-life organization Live Action found this out the hard way last week, after the platform was fact-checked by abortionists and Facebook threatened to limit the page’s outreach. Although Facebook stepped back from that decision after Senators Josh Hawley (R-MI) and Ted Cruz (R-TX) sent a letter to the company, the fact-checkers have not backed down. One of them, Dr. Jennifer Gunter, tweeted, “People who lie about abortion should be banned from Facebook for spreading hate.”
In a BuzzFeed piece, part of the fact check was attributed to Gunter, who also decided that Facebook was a publisher, not a platform. She tweeted, “Why would you take the opinion of forced births trolls (who by the way can be politicians) over medical facts? Are you officially a propaganda machine now?”
Gunter has written prolifically in the media, from the New York Times to Teen Vogue.
Live Action, according to Gunter, is guilty of spreading hate, “because part of their goal is intimidation of and promoting harassment and physical violence against abortion providers.” Hilariously, Gunter had previously been complaining that Facebook had censored her book by removing images of female genitals from her book ads.
The primary fact-checkers for HealthCheck.org wrote an op-ed for the Washington Post defending their decision. Drs. Daniel Grossman and Robyn Schyckler wrote, “Sometimes when tragedy strikes, the best medical treatment involves abortion, because that’s the fastest and safest way to save the pregnant woman’s life.”
Even though they deny that they are interested “in having a shouting match with Lila Rose or Republican senators,” according to them, only people with “medical expertise” should be saying whether or not abortion is medically necessary. The irony here is that Lila Rose, the founder of Live Action, was echoing the professional opinions of several doctors.