An online petition to ban President-elect Donald Trump from Twitter has generated more than 22,000 signatures.
The petition at Care2 Petitions has been around for a few months but it gained steam on Tuesday when Trump took to Twitter to suggest that people who burn the American flag should permanently lose their citizenship — or maybe go to jail for a year.
Shirley Burns, the author of the Care2 petition to rid Twitter of Trump, says that Trump “has crossed a line by attacking people on Twitter based on their race, religion, gender and more.”
Burns cites Twitter’s rules. “You may not promote violence against or directly attack or threaten other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability, or disease,” a clause concerning “hateful conduct” in the Twitter rulebook explains.
Accounts “engaging in the activities specified below may be temporarily locked and/or subject to permanent suspension,” Twitter’s rules state.
“By locking or suspending Donald Trump’s account, Twitter can send a powerful message that hate is not accepted or condoned on their platform,” the petition urges.
In the past, Trump has tweeted rants which Burns and, presumably, the several thousand signatories of the Care2 petition consider sufficiently hateful.
In 2015, for example, Trump tweeted: “Druggies, drug dealers, rapists and killers are coming across the southern border. When will the U.S. get smart and stop this travesty?”
In a recent update, Burns cites The New York Times for the proposition that “Donald Trump has insulted 258 people, places and things on Twitter.”
“President-elect Trump is using Twitter to spread false information and propose monstrous ideas,” the petition says. “If Twitter doesn’t suspend his account, Trump will continue to use it as a state propaganda machine.”
A press release sent to The Daily Caller concerning the petition notes that Twitter has already banned Internet provocateur and Breitbart News tech editor — and Trump supporter — Milo Yiannopoulos.
“We call on Twitter to investigate @realDonaldTrump and temporarily suspend his account until, to use Trump’s own words, they can ‘figure out what is going on,'” the the petition beseeches.
Though a smattering of protesters who have gathered in response to Trump’s election have burned American flags, Trump’s Tuesday morning proposal to jail flag-burning protesters — or strip their citizenship — comes seemingly out of the blue.
A U.S. Supreme Court case, Texas v. Johnson, guarantees that protesters can burn American flags.
The famous case involves a man — Johnson — who set an American flag on fire outside the venue of the 1984 Republican National Convention. In a 5-4 ruling, the Supreme Court held that burning a U.S. flag is symbolic speech protected under the Constitution.
As of the wee hours of Wednesday morning, six of the most recent 10 signatories of the petition to ban Trump from Twitter had indicated that they live in foreign countries. Two said they live in Italy. One each listed South Africa, Serbia, British Columbia and Croatia.