On December 10, Facebook blocked me, for 30 days, for a comment about loving sinners.
Facebook gave me this message:
We Removed Something You Posted
It looks like something you posted doesn’t follow our Community Standards. On Facebook, we don’t allow offers of sexual services, solicitation of sexual materials, threats or depictions of sexual violence, threats to share intimate images or any sexual content involving minors.
Como cristãos, precisamos amar os homossexuais, os assassinos, os estupradores, os pedófilos e todos os outros pecadores. Só o amor de Jesus pode fazer isso em nós.
My comment, made originally in Portuguese, has this translation: “As Christians, we should love homosexuals, murderers, rapists, pedophiles and all the other sinners. Only Jesus’s love can do it in us.”
So Facebook removed my comment (not post) from the post of a Christian friend, who liked it. But obviously Facebook did not like it. Strangely, Facebook saw in my comment any one of the following descriptions: “offers of sexual services, solicitation of sexual materials, threats or depictions of sexual violence, threats to share intimate images or any sexual content involving minors.”
To express love for sinners is “offers of sexual services”? Is it “solicitation of sexual materials”? Is it “threats or depictions of sexual violence”? Is it “threats to share intimate images or any sexual content involving minors”?
I am in the dark if Facebook bans Christians from loving sinners. This kind of love does not lead Christians to get involved in sins. It leads them to preach the Gospel to sinners. Facebook became powerful in an America founded by Christians who hated sin, loved sinners and preached the Gospel to them.
According to Facebook’s law, cannot I love or preach the Gospel to homosexuals, murderers, rapists, pedophiles and all the other sinners?
Yet, Facebook not only removed my comment. It also gave me the following message:
You’re Temporarily Blocked From Posting
This temporary block will last 30 days, and you won’t be able to post on Facebook until it’s finished.
You’ve repeatedly posted things that aren’t allowed on Facebook. Read the Facebook Community Standards to learn what kinds of posts aren’t allowed.
So because Facebook does not like Christians willing to love and preach the Gospel to homosexuals, murderers, rapists, pedophiles and all the other sinners, it blocked me, imposing on me a 30-day ban on my communication through my personal Facebook profile.
Many times, when I reported name-calling and foul language against my Christian views and Christians, Facebook gave me the automatic answer that it could do nothing. Every time I reported abusive language, Facebook said,
“Thanks for letting us know about this. We looked over the comment, and though it doesn’t go against one of our specific Community Standards, you did the right thing by letting us know about it. No one should have to feel bullied or harassed on Facebook, and we’re sorry you had this experience.”
Abusive language against my Christian views and Christians was deemed by Facebook as not violating their Community Standards.
But my general comment, which did not attack anyone specifically, was deemed abusive: “offers of sexual services, solicitation of sexual materials, threats or depictions of sexual violence, threats to share intimate images or any sexual content involving minors.”
Facebook does not want Christians to be Christian in Facebook. If Facebook has a problem with religion, I wonder if the same treatment is applied to Muslims.
Last July, the California-based Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund sent an official legal letter to the Facebook lawyers threatening legal action after Facebook removed a post by me and blocked me for 30 days.
After the threat, Facebook said,
“A member of our team accidentally removed something you posted on Facebook. This was a mistake, and we sincerely apologize for this error. We’ve since restored the content, and you should now be able to see it.”
Can some good lawyer send a letter to Facebook to ask them if, as a Christian, I am allowed to express that I love homosexuals, murderers, rapists, pedophiles and all the other sinners in the Christian interest to preach the Gospel to them?
Could Facebook be specific and say that Christians are banned from free speech rights in its social media?
Portuguese version of this article: Por que o Facebook concede liberdade de expressão para radicais anticristãos e impõe censura nos cristãos?
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.