In a letter addressed to President Trump, Tuesday, a free- speech Institute demands the President unblocks certain Twitter users on grounds that the practice violates the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, Reuters reports.
This was a reaction to the recent blocking of a number of accounts by Trump’s @realDonaldTrump, those blocked were those who replied to his tweets with criticism, disdain or disagreed with his actions.
The Knight First Amendment Institute said in its letter that the blocking suppressed speech in a public forum protected by the Constitution. A senior staff attorney of the Institute Alex Abdo compared Twitter to a modern form of town hall meeting. a venue where U.S. law requires even-handed treatment of speech.
Accordig to the letter, Trump or his aides blocked the accounts @AynRandPaulRyan and @joepabike, belonging to songwriter Holly O’Reilly and professional cyclist and author Joseph M. Papp, O’Reilly was blocked on May 28 after posting a brief animated clip of Pope Francis looking uncomfortable during a meeting with Trump captioned, “this is pretty much how the whole world sees you”. Papp was blocked after responding to a Trump tweet calling him a “#fake leader.”
Legal experts have said his tweets may directly affect policy. A chain of postings about his travel ban may hamper his administration’s defense in courts