Republican Senate Candidate Lands Facebook Ban for AR-15 Promo

“It’s dangerous to go alone! Take this.” Petersen uses social media and popular memes to reach out to a larger audience. (Photo: Petersen/Facebook)

A Missouri Republican Senate candidate got temporarily banned from his Facebook page after promoting an AR-15 giveaway.

Austin Petersen, who was the runner-up for the 2016 Libertarian Party Presidential candidate, says his personal Facebook account was suspended after he hosted a livestream on his professional Facebook page.

Petersen’s campaign page, AP4Liberty, is working and up to date. His personal page, Austin Wade, has been inactive since late September.

“I was signed out of Facebook on all my devices,” Petersen told Reason. “When I signed back in, I received a message saying that my livestream had been the cause of me being banned for 30 days.”

“This was a livestream done on my professional public facing account,” he said, “but it was my personal account (Austin Wade) that got the ban.”

Petersen said that Facebook suggested that it was a mistake in the automatic filtering system. He is not so sure that’s the case. “[the filter] takes down videos almost instantaneously, while my video wasn’t taken down until 24 hours after it was created.”

See Also: Facebook Engineer Fights His Employer’s Anti-Gun, Anti-Conservative Bias From the Inside

In response, Petersen published an open letter to Mark Zuckerberg, co-founder and CEO of Facebook.

“The ‘offensive’ rifle that triggered my facebook ban,” said Petersen. (Photo: Petersen/Twitter)

“In my campaign for the United States Senate, I have made Facebook a centerpiece of my outreach efforts,” he said. “I have used both my personal profile and my official page to connect with friends, family, and supporters, and to share and express our views about the future of the country.”

“That’s why, on September 22, I was so shocked to receive a notification from Facebook informing me that my personal account had been ‘blocked’ from using Facebook for thirty days because I ‘recently posted something that violates Facebook’s policies.”

“It’s difficult to ignore that this action comes during a period of heightened tension regarding Facebook’s role in our elections, and its perceived bias against conservative voices,” he continued. “Moreover, the fact that your Chief Operating Officer — Sheryl Sandberg — has ‘leaned into’ my election by donating the maximum allowable amount to my opponent does not inspire confidence in Facebook’s neutrality.”

“Blocking a candidate for the United States Senate for exercising support of the Second Amendment — especially when that candidate is challenging an incumbent favored by members of your board — is cause for concern and worthy of a larger conversation and a public explanation,” said Petersen.

Many have accused Facebook of suppressing conservative opinions, although the company routinely denies the practice. In the meantime, Petersen is leveraging his Twitter feed as well as his professional page to promote the AR-15 giveaway.

{ 16 comments… add one }
  • Sepp W October 13, 2017, 5:19 pm

    Facebook is a liberal apparatchik. It suspended my account indefinitely for challenging the Left-wing provocateurs running rampant spreading misinformation, name-calling, made-up facts, etc, etc.

    • Jose V. Vega October 14, 2017, 1:08 pm

      I don’t like FACEBOOK NEVER USED AND WE NOT NEED IT, ARE LIBASTARDS WHO NEED IT, WE NEED TO INVENT SAMETHING THAT IS OUR OWN AND BOICOT FACEBOOK WE LIVE HUNDRES OF YEARS WITH AUT WE STILL CAN LIVE HUNDRES MORE WITH OUT

  • Scott in Atlanta October 9, 2017, 5:59 pm

    Great article that shows why I stopped using Farcebook and refuse to give Pukerberg any business whatsoever. Wouldn’t it be nice if everyone did?

  • Winston October 6, 2017, 3:19 pm

    The US political Neo-left hates the American white male middle class.

  • Mike Watkins October 6, 2017, 11:58 am

    Facebook and eBay and PayPal and numerous other online tools that most of us use daily are:

    Using our dollars to promote unhealthy and deviant activities and lifestyles;
    Repressive of opinions of folks like us;
    Anti-freedom, anti-constitution;
    Stealthy and sneaky and devious about the above.

    In other words, enemies hiding in plain sight among us. Why are we supporting them? And I type this on an Apple I-phone, supporting CEO Tim Cook’s radical gay-lesbian-trans-etc agenda.

    Woe is us!

    • American October 8, 2017, 10:09 am

      And Facebook deleted my ad ,on a local Facebook farm site “Chickens for Sale” = not kidding. They don’t want chickens or any other farm animal going to a “bad” home.

  • Mark October 6, 2017, 11:27 am

    News break- – – New Name Change, – TWOFACED BOOK

  • Michael Keim October 6, 2017, 10:52 am

    So much for the 1st Amendment.

  • Derek October 6, 2017, 10:44 am

    This guy shouldn’t be allowed to own a gun. His AR is loaded and leaning against a piece of moveable furniture. That’s a safety violation in any civilized military.

    • Andrew Dawson October 6, 2017, 11:31 am

      How do you know the AR is loaded? There’s simply a magazine inserted into the well. Also, pretty sure he’s not in the military.

    • OxyJohn October 6, 2017, 11:45 am

      Just how can you tell it is loaded? I can see a clip in it but that could be empty and just in for the photo.

  • joefoam October 6, 2017, 9:03 am

    Facebook, Google, YouTube and the like are shaping the politics of the world. Take anything you see or hear on them with a grain of salt. Weak minded fools believe all that is shown on them.

  • shrugger October 6, 2017, 8:59 am

    Black rifles ARE super scary. Do what I did and paint it Foliage green. Flat dark earth would also work.

  • Infidel762x51 October 6, 2017, 7:46 am

    Fakebook, another front for the new Brownshirts.

  • Jay October 6, 2017, 7:24 am

    Not to bright is you haven’t figured out by now the Facebook, is nothing but a liberal tolling booth for their Agenda! They make money off all you fools!

    • Winston October 6, 2017, 3:22 pm

      CIAbook. They mine it for information on everyone who uses it. They are not supposed to spy on US citizens within the US.

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