With looming YouTube ban, gun videos find another platform

politics | Mar 23, 2018 | By Martin Barillas

Highlighting the support from major corporations that progressive causes enjoy, Fox News host Tucker Carlson sought to explain on Thursday that leftists collude with companies such as Google and Citigroup to assail the Second Amendment and gun rights. "The ideological gap between the leaders of America's most powerful corporations and, say, the Democratic Party is basically nonexistent. They agree on everything," Carlson said on his eponymous program. "Now, having failed at the ballot box in 2016, the left is using other means to make the outcome of those elections irrelevant. Nowhere is this clearer than on the subject of the Second Amendment."

As examples, Carlson cited the removal of the page for gun deals from the popular Reddit website, while Google’s YouTube has announced that it will ban certain videos linking to gun sellers or which promote the purchase of firearms and accessories. He noted that Citigroup’s announcement that it will cease to do business with companies that do not comply with the financial giant’s restrictions on gun sales. Citigroup is taking action to prohibit its clients from selling firearms to persons under 21 years of age. It thus became the latest among companies that are setting higher minimum age for rifle purchases. Citigroup’s business customers will be required to conduct background checks for all firearm sales, in addition to stop selling high-capacity magazines and so-called bump stocks.

Carlson tweeted on Thursday, “The left and large corporations are working together to roll back the Second Amendment without legislation. Citigroup will require clients to stop gun sales to people under 21 and bar the sale of bump stocks and high-capacity magazines. Citigroup got a bailout from taxpayers and now it wants to undermine taxpayers.”

Less than nine years ago, Carlson said, taxpayers bailed out Citigroup with billions of federal dollars. "Now they turn around and look to undermine the constitutional rights of the taxpayers who bailed them out," he said. Saying that businesses are becoming more involved in contentious issues, Carlson said, "The fear the government might remove your rights is becoming quaint. Big tech and big finance are doing it for them already. With no public debate, they just do it. And tough luck if you don't like it."

Starting in April, YouTube will ban how-to videos that show how to make firearms and accessories such as silencers and bump stocks. Additionally, the website will ban videos that feature content which shows the sale of firearms and accessories. YouTube will also bar videos giving instructions on the installation of firearms modifications. In a statement, a YouTube spokesperson declared, "We routinely make updates and adjustments to our enforcement guidelines across all of our policies," and added, "While we've long prohibited the sale of firearms, we recently notified creators of updates we will be making around content promoting the sale or manufacture of firearms and their accessories, specifically, items like ammunition, gatling triggers, and drop-in auto sears."

Gun rights advocates responded negatively to YouTube’s announcement. Florida-based Spike's Tactical posted on Facebook, "The Liberal Left will slowly chip away at our freedoms and erode our rights, and the first step is to squelch our voice. To say we're f*cking pissed is an understatement." 

For its part, InRangeTV will publish videos on a pornography website called Pornhub, Bloomberg reported. InRangeTV has 144,000 subscribers on YouTube. Pornhub now has at least five InRangeTV videos. On Facebook, InRangeTV recently wrote that it is defending "freedom of expression on the internet. ... Why are we seeing continuing restrictions and challenges towards content about something demonstrably legal yet not against that which is clearly illegal?" InRangeTV posted YouTube videos on synthesizing meth and other illegal activity to make its point. PornHub does removes some video content, according to its website. Videos are removed in case of blackmail, intimidation, revenge porn and copyright infringement. 
 

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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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