Ben Garrison was suspended from Twitter and Facebook after the Capitol Hill protests. The cartoonist is also a supporter of former President Donald Trump, and his work often caused controversies.
Garrison's been accused of being sexist, racist, Islamophobic, anti-vaccine, and antisemitic. His defense, if you can call it that, was freedom of speech.
His permanent Twitter ban comes after the CEOs of this social network decided to remove all alt-right extremists. It was at the same time Twitter banned Donald Trump for life.
Free speech comes with a price
The infamous caricaturist was banned from Instagram two years ago. After he supported the Capitol Hill protests, which resulted in five deaths, Twitter has had it.
Despite his alt-right political views and QAnon conspiracy theories, it's puzzling that social media are the ones putting people on trial. If his work was insulting if he was promoting hate speech, where's the real punishment? The real responsibility?
The cartoonist made a splash with his last work. It goes directly against people who recognized him as a white supremacist.
In the meantime, dictators all over the world are spreading their delusions over social networks, banning people close to former president Trump seems like a personal vendetta.
Banning or suspending won't change Garrison's way of thinking. It might make him more popular since, in this case, freedom of speech is at stake.
Hate speech Vs. Free speech
Garrison's no stranger to controversies. By banning him, even temporarily, like from Facebook, takes away his powers. But, his supporters will only use it as ammunition to create even more offensive content.
In a world of "cancel culture" and "everyone's insulted," how can we really tell what's free speech and what's not? How can we think that banning someone from one network won't make them even bigger on another?
Ben Garrison is Twitter's response to their definition of hate speech. But, it's not the solution, especially in a time where we all deserve some healing.
It's a matter of taking responsibility. And so far, we haven't seen many alt-right members having any regrets over Capitol Hill or any other protest.
Hiding behind free speech is easy. Coming to terms with what you stand for, well, that might not be that easy. Besides figuring out where the line between free and hate speech, let's remember that free speech is not bullying someone based on gender, religion, skin color, or creed.
Garrison raised a good point regarding social media. Yet, he failed to lead by example. That's what his suspension stands for.