The acting commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) accused Twitter of removing his pro-Border Wall tweet and freezing his account, saying the move was intended to “outrage every American citizen.
“They didn’t lock me out, they locked you out,” Mark Morgan said on Thursday. “They pushed through their own ideology, their own belief system to justify withholding the truth from the American people because it did not fit into their very obvious and transparent agenda.
Morgan, who has been in office since 2019 under President Donald Trump, spoke on Thursday morning at a press conference in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas to commemorate the 400 miles of border wall system completed under the Trump administration.
Morgan called the achievement an “incredible milestone” and described the wall system on the U.S.-Mexico border as “an essential part of a multi-faceted strategy of infrastructure, technology and human resources that has been in place for decades.
He said this in a tweet posted to his account on Wednesday afternoon: “My tweet was to educate the American people about the importance of the borders and what great things the men and women of CBP and [the Department of Homeland Security]as a whole have done. My tweet should emphasize that border security is national security.
Morgan said that the tweet essentially stated that border walls “are an important part of a multi-faceted strategy to help the men and women of CBP catch criminals” and that this was similar to “hundreds and hundreds” of tweets he had sent out in recent years.
But none of Morgan’s 31,500 supporters got to see the very “critical information contained in this tweet” because the technology giant had removed it and blocked his account on Wednesday, Morgan said.
In screenshots provided to conservative publication The Federalist, an e-mail from Twitter accused Morgan of “violating our rules against hateful behavior. The statement stated that posts that promote, threaten or harass other people “on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability or serious illness” were not allowed.
Morgan struck Twitter in his speech during Thursday’s press conference, referring to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s top leader, regarding the social media site’s hate speech policy.
An English Twitter account that published “news, messages and statements” from Khamenei twittered on May 22: “The Zionist regime is a deadly cancerous growth and a disadvantage for this region. It will undoubtedly be uprooted and destroyed”.
4 The Zionist regime is a deadly, cancerous growth and a disadvantage for this region. It will undoubtedly be uprooted and destroyed. Then the shame will fall on those who put their institutions at the service of the normalization of relations with this regime.
– Khamenei.ir (@khamenei_ir) May 22, 2020
Morgan said it was “ironic” that Khamenei could tweet for the “complete and utter destruction of Israel” and “somehow it’s okay”.
“But for me to tweet about how effective the wall is and how it absolutely helps us arrest criminals who try to enter this country illegally is kind of hate speech? That’s absurd,” said Morgan, “and like I said, it doesn’t pass the BS test.
When asked directly about Morgan’s tweet, a Twitter spokesperson told Tekk.tv that the website on the referenced tweet had “taken enforcement action” but “the decision was reversed after further evaluation by our team”.
According to Twitter, account holders have access to a special appeals process. Morgan made his first tweet on Thursday shortly after 3:00 pm, after being locked out for about 20 hours.
“The censorship of @Twitter should outrage every American,” Morgan twittered, “Not only did Twitter prevent me from posting, but it also excluded YOU from the TRUTH.
Back online after Twitter was blocked for ~20 hours. The censorship of @Twitter should outrage every American. Twitter not only blocked me from posting, but also excluded YOU from TRUTH.
Read my statement â¬ï¸ pic.twitter.com/tjNgLn5knx
– CBP Mark Morgan (@CBPMarkMorgan) October 29, 2020
When Tekk.tv came up with a statement, a CBP spokesperson referred to Morgan’s appearance at the press conference.
Morgan served as chief of the US border patrol under the former