Social Media giant Youtube has just taken down a video posted by Republican congressional candidate Jason Mariner that shows him and Broward County High school teacher John Alvarez being told to leave a meeting because they were not wearing masks.
Mariner was serving as the teacher’s representative in a meeting set up to discuss the teacher’s non-compliance with the school board imposed mask rule, a rule that was adopted to defy Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’s no mask mandate executive order.
Hautigan: Mr. Alvarez, you were given two options, one was to have a Teams meeting for your Due Process meeting, where you would not have to wear a mask or to follow School Board policy if you came on campus and wear a mask.
Alvarez responded by saying that he did not have access to the Teams system.
Hautigan: Then we will reschedule the meeting for later in the day, make sure you have a laptop.
Alvarez: We’re here now.
Hautigan: Without a mask, I cannot meet you sir and I will ask you to leave campus. As I mentioned to you yesterday, I am asking you to leave, so you will be paid for the day because I am telling you to go home. Do you have any questions?
Mariner, who is running in the special congressional election to replace the late Rep. Alcee Hastings, told The Floridian that YouTube’s censoring of his video was a violation of his First Amendment rights.
“I stood up for a teacher, his right to choose; wear a mask or not. This is about ALL OF US, as Americans. Take away my right to free speech, who's to say they won’t take yours away? This is not America. Without rights, we don’t have an America.,” stated Mariner.
Mariner is not alone in his belief that wearing a mask should be up to the individual and not by mandate.
Chris Nelson, the founder of ReOpen South Florida, sided with Mariner and believes that more teachers should follow suit and refuse to wear masks if that is what they believe in.
“I am not a bit surprised that YouTube pulled that video down. YouTube has a real problem with anybody that defies their narrative, and they don’t want these things getting out there because they don’t want it putting ideas in people’s heads that,” said Nelson. The fact that they took this video down shows that what Mr.Alvarez did was very effective and should be done by other teachers as well.”
YouTube’s “COVID-19 medical misinformation policy states:
YouTube doesn't allow content about COVID-19 that poses a serious risk of egregious harm.
YouTube doesn't allow content that spreads medical misinformation that contradicts local health authorities’ or the World Health Organization’s (WHO) medical information about COVID-19. This is limited to content that contradicts WHO or local health authorities’ guidance on:
- Social distancing and self isolation guidelines
- The existence of COVID-19
While the Mariner YouTube video shows Alvarez disagreeing with the mask mandate, it hardly poses “a serious risk of egregious harm"