Alan Dershowitz Dares YouTube to Censor Him for Interview with ‘Neither Free nor Fair’ Author Joel Pollak

Alan Dershowitz
ANDREW INNERARITY/REUTERS

Harvard Law School professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz is daring YouTube to censor him for interviewing Breitbart News Senior Editor-at-Large Joel Pollak Thursday about his new ebook, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election.

In his book, Pollak argues that the 2020 election fell short of international standards for a “free and fair” election, and he discusses the possibility that fraud could have taken place (though he also argues that Americans should accept the result).

As Breitbart News reported Wednesday, YouTube has announced that it will remove all videos questioning Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 presidential election.

Dershowitz, a lifelong civil libertarian and free speech advocate, was outraged.

Dershowitz interviewed Pollak on the Dershow, his semi-eponymous podcast. He noted news reports of YouTube’s termination of over 8,000 channels alleging widespread voter fraud in the 2020 presidential election. He described the purge of such channels as “disenfranchising” of Americans by “denying them the right to express a view on an extraordinarily influential platform like Google YouTube.”

Dershowitz asked, “Can you imagine anything more inconsistent with the spirit and culture of the First Amendment than to stop a debate about a presidential election?”

Pollak noted, “A huge portion of the electorate — let’s say close to 100 million people, in the ballpark — believe that the election was stolen. Now, that doesn’t mean it was actually stolen, but a lot of people believe that it was or may have been.”

Dershowitz remarked:

So YouTube, here’s my message to you. You’ve just heard an extremely distinguished journalist, a man who has enormous credibility, a man who has enormous influence over tens of millions of Americans who reasonably believe him. You’ve just heard him fit the criteria that you have set out for taking down channels.

He has alleged — not in direct dramatic terms, but he certainly as alleged — that there is a substantial possibility that this election may have been influenced, determined, the outcome changed by systemic errors, by the ability to vote by mail. 

Is it true or isn’t it true? That’s for Americans to debate. So YouTube. I challenge you, take down this show. I challenge you, take down this channel. I challenge you, do not allow Joel Pollak to express his views on my show, and if you do, there will be a response. There will be response, because you will have lost your exemptions under Section 230.

You are no longer, at that point, a platform. You are making editorial judgments. Why are you being treated more favorably than the New York Times or the Washington Post or Breitbart? Why do you get an exemption if you’re making these kinds of decisions?

Pollak said Google and YouTube “have long since proven themselves to be publishers and not platforms, and the same is true of Twitter and Facebook.”

Pollak added, “The news today and yesterday that Hunter Biden is under investigation for financial crimes — we don’t know the full extent of the investigation — but that news confirms the legitimacy of the New York Post story about Hunter Biden’s laptop and his emails, but that was suppressed by the major tech platforms.”

“Increasingly, YouTube, Google, Facebook, Twitter, these other companies [are] interfering in political debates and yet claiming exemption under Section 230,” concluded Pollak.

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