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Twitter Flags Trump Tweet on Using Force against Anarchists for Violating ‘Abusive Behavior’ Policy

President Trump speaks in a roundtable briefing on border security in Yuma, Ariz., June 23, 2020. (Carlos Barria/Reuters)

Twitter placed a warning on a tweet by President Trump on Tuesday afternoon, saying the tweet violated the company’s policy on “abusive behavior.”

“There will never be an ‘Autonomous Zone’ in Washington, D.C., as long as I’m your President,” Trump wrote. “If they try they will be met with serious force!”

Trump was responding to demonstrators who attempted to create an autonomous zone outside the White House. Protesters planted a sign on H street declaring the area a “Black House Autonomous Zone,” and graffitied the historic St. John’s Church with the letters “BHAZ.”

Twitter, however, said Trump’s tweet threatening “serious force” violated a policy banning the “presence of a threat of harm against an identifiable group.”

“Per our policies, this Tweet will remain on the service given its relevance to ongoing public conversation,” announced Twitter Safety, the company division that deals with cybersecurity, privacy, and online abuse. “Engagements with the Tweet will be limited. People will be able to Retweet with Comment, but not Like, Reply, or Retweet it.”

Twitter placed a fact-check label on a tweet by Trump in late May, after which the president signed an executive order directing the Federal Communications Commission to review certain immunity regulations that apply to social media companies. Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act exempts social media companies from liability for libelous or misleading content posted by a third party.

Send a tip to the news team at NR.

Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.

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