The problem with news censorship

18 January 2022
Trump rally in Florence AZ

Crowd at Trump's rally in Florence AZ / @tommisiniluoto on Twitter

Did you know that Donald Trump held a rally in Florence, Arizona, on Saturday night? 

I only knew this because I briefly logged in to Gettr to check updates from people who have been deplatformed on Twitter.  (Fas est et ab hoste doceri, as Ovid put it.) I was curious as to what Trump was up to, given that he had cancelled a press conference scheduled for 6 January, the anniversary of the storming of the Capitol.

So, I searched on Twitter for “Trump rally Arizona”. What came up was an assortment of comments like:

  • Hundreds of volunteers being organized for Trump’s rally in Arizona. They are indoors with no masks. This will be another superspreader event.
  • you call it a Trump rally, I call it an omicron variant incubation epicenter
  • Ten bucks says Trump admits to at least two felonies tonight.
  • If the newly formed FBI Domestic Terrorist Task Force wanted to round up a bunch of domestic terrorists and their leader all at once… They would go to the Trump coup rally in Arizona tonight
  • So is it true there are no port a potties set up at Trump’s Arizona rally? That way the anti vaxxers/election deniers can more easily swallow their own pee.
  • trump has invited GOP Arizona state “representative” & candidate for AZ Secretary of State Mark Finchem to speak at his #TrumpRally tonight. Finchem is an Oath Keeper. You remember the Oath Keepers, their leader was just arrested for SEDITIOUS CONSPIRACY.

It turns out there were people tweeting about the rally from an informational perspective, it’s just that Twitter’s search box was not feeding me that information. For example, this:

T-2 hours until President Trump takes the stage in Florence, Arizona! ? Are YOU watching? Tune in on Rumble!

So I tuned in on Rumble. I was obviously way ahead of schedule because there’s a seven hour time difference between Johannesburg GP and Florence AZ. With several hours to go before gates open, hundreds upon hundreds are lined up to enter the venue. They’re unmasked, apparently in good spirits, the line is moving along in an orderly fashion. I told myself I would check it out on Monday on YouTube.

Comes Monday, and I searched YouTube for “Trump Rally Arizona”. There are lots of videos, but they’re all from last year.

I eventually watched Trump’s rally on Rumble, not for what he was going to say (because I can pretty much script what Trump’s catch phrases are), but rather to get a sense of the turnout and crowd dynamics. And it's clear there is an undercurrent in the US right now that is not being observed because it is being suppressed; by major media players, and by the tech platforms.

In spite of this, Trump and his team have managed to draw thousands upon thousands of people into a town I knew nothing about until this weekend. And he is greeted with almost religious fervor. He’s apparently doing another such rally in Texas, 29 January.

This man is on the campaign trail. I expect major upsets in the US mid-term elections later this year as a result.

What I find alarming is that many Democrat voters will not be prepared for that because no one has let them see what’s coming.

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