Pro-Free Speech Legal Group Supports Babylon Bee In Court

October 2nd, 2023 1:30 PM

The Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) is rallying behind The Babylon Bee amidst its battle in court against government-mandated censorship.

ADF attorneys filed a friend-of-the-court brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit in support of satire news site The Babylon Bee. The brief urged the Court to uphold an injunction granted by a lower court that would prevent New York from forcing online publications to monitor so-called “hateful conduct.”

In its press release and brief, ADF argued that the First Amendment protects satire regardless of the topic, even if it happens to be controversial in nature. “The satirists at The Babylon Bee already have their work cut out for them just trying to keep their satirical headlines weeks or even days ahead of actual news—they shouldn’t also have to worry that humorless state officials will deprive them of their First Amendment freedoms,” ADF Legal Counsel Bryan Neihart said.

The protection of satire is central to the United States’ original core values protecting free speech. “Every American is free to peacefully express his point of view, and that includes humor and sarcasm,” Neihart added. “Our freedoms don’t hinge on whether the state agrees with what we have to say, or whether they appreciate our sense of humor.”

The brief is more specific and explicitly says the law will prohibit people from sharing their ideas online which will shut down the “marketplace for ideas and debate.”

“These tattle-tale requirements chill reasonable people’s speech by discouraging them from making comments that might arguably fit within a reportable category of speech,” the brief states. “The marketplace for ideas and debate becomes a sea of suspicion and retaliatory reports.”

ADF Senior Counsel and Senior Vice President for Corporate Engagement Jeremy Tedesco said the law is overbroad and will permit the state to silence opinions it disagrees with.

“So-called ‘hateful conduct’ policies are impermissibly overbroad and permit those applying them to censor opinions they don’t like,” Tedesco said. “We’re seeing that form of censorship more and more from government officials, social media platforms, and even financial institutions. That’s a disturbing trend and it needs to stop.”

The Babylon Bee is a member of the Free Speech Alliance.

Conservatives are under attack. Contact your representatives and demand that Big Tech be held to account to mirror the First Amendment while providing transparency, clarity on so-called hate speech and equal footing for conservatives. If you have been censored, contact us using CensorTrack’s contact form, and help us hold Big Tech accountable.