The question needs to be asked. When is Liberty University going to close The Falkirk Center? When the organization is named for a person wrapped up in a sordid sex scandal and an internet troll the time has come to pull the plug. This post briefly looks at Charlie Kirk running afoul of Twitter.
“I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep; I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion.”
Alexander The Great
A person finds joy in giving an apt reply—and how good is a timely word!
Proverbs 15:23 NIV
The question needs to be asked. When is Liberty University going to euthanize the Falkirk Center? After all one part of the center is named after a disgraced president of the school who liked to watch his wife have sex with a pool boy and who also allegedly had problems with alcohol. Then the other half is named after an internet troll who can’t do anything other than troll online. You can read about Kirk’s most recent efforts which got his work kicked off many social media sites in, “Is an Internet Troll Farm in Phoenix, Arizona That Engages in Psychological Information Warfare Consistent With Liberty University’s Christian Values?“
Charlie Kirk Locked on Twitter
The other day Charlie Kirk was spreading disinformation online about the absentee ballets in Pennsylvania. In the process he violated Twitter’s rules about spreading misinformation about voting. You can see a copy of what got Kirk locked on Twitter and follow the link to John Fea.
You can read more about this in the following websites.
- Newsweek, “Charlie Kirk Twitter Account Locked for Spreading ‘Misleading Information About Voting’ To His 1.8 Million Followers.”
- The Independent, “Charlie Kirk: Trump supporter has Twitter account locked for spreading misinformation about mail-in voting.”
When he was locked out of Twitter Kirk claimed that he was a hostage. Kirk went on Fox News‘ “The Next Revolution with Steve Hilton” and whined about Twitter blocking him. “I do not have access to my Twitter account because I tweeted a widely reported story.” Kirk went on and explained his point of view. “Things are constantly changing in the news cycle,” Kirk said. “Why should Twitter have the power to silence my entire 1.8 million person audience just because a news story changes and I tweeted something that was absolutely and completely widely reported at the time.” After Kirk popped up o n Fox News Media Matters for America weighed in on what he had to say and pointed out that he lied in the process. Here is how John Whitehouse writes about the situation.
“Kirk’s excuse for his false tweet is both hilarious and an obvious lie: By saying to Hilton that the story is about mail-in ballot applications and not ballots, Kirk is already conceding that his tweet was incorrect.
And yet, despite admitting that he was wrong, Kirk refuses to delete the tweet.
More interesting, though, is that Kirk is just obviously lying about the story having “changed.” Kirk never explains that at all; he merely says, hilariously, that “things are constantly changing in the news cycle” as if the rest of us don’t know that.
And Kirk’s timeline just doesn’t make sense. To the contrary, the ProPublica piece that set this all off was published on October 16 at 5:30 a.m. EDT, a full day and a half before Kirk tweeted. You can see reprints of the same article from that day. Election expert Rick Hasen blogged about it that day. It was shared on social media, including by the Biden campaign in Pennsylvania.
Plenty of stories emerge with factually murky scenarios before becoming clear. This isn’t one of them. People and news outlets talking about the story Friday were very clear that this was about ballot applications/requests, and not ballots.
The conflation of ballot applications with ballots happened later, and only in the fever swamps. For instance, the Fox & Friends Facebook post which conflated them was sharing the Fox News article about the ProPublica story. It just took until Fox & Friends posted on Facebook on Friday evening for this particular misinformation to emerge.
Now, look, it’s obvious that the right-wing megadonors funding Kirk know how this schtick works. It’s also clear that Fox News personalities like Steve Hilton are perfectly happy to help Kirk tell his sob story, truth be damned. And of course, Fox & Friends played Kirk’s sob story this morning without any acknowledgement of how the show’s brand helped kickstart this lie.
But as Kirk’s record of disinformation gets longer and longer and his organizations are repeatedly caught breaking the rules, one has to wonder how long these tech companies will let themselves get played by someone whose immediate reaction to being corrected is to strap on a metaphorical diaper and cry until he gets attention.”
After the Tweets were deleted Charlie Kirk was allowed to grace Twitter with his annoying personality. He announced that he is back on Twitter with a Tweet the other day.
Its Time to Pull the Plug for The Falkirk Center
The time has come for Liberty University to stand down The Falkirk Center. The center has no basis or purpose in the greater Liberty organization. Its mission is at odds with the history program and any serious academic history program. If you feel compelled to defend a nationalist think tank at a Christian school, I would ask you to explain the differences between patriotism and nationalism. Any person who has engaged in a serious study of history knows the differences between patriotism and nationalism and understands the harm that comes with nationalism. Nationalism has been used to rally a people group in a nation-state before some of the darkest events in world history. In contrast, patriotism is healthy and needed. Nationalism is toxic and fans the flames. One other point this blog would like to make. I am a homeless conservative in many ways who rejects the current state of things in our political system. But I find it deeply ironic that someone who claims to talk about growth and private ownership and free markets is thus advocating for restrictions on a company like Twitter. Twitter is a private company and they can do what they want. Its like Bank of America or Wells Fargo, as they are free to govern themselves as they see fit and do not break the law.
But all of these problems at The Falkirk Center has long been in conflict with the organized and basic message of The Gospel- well for at least most Christians. But now as scandal has unfolded at Liberty University the Falkirk has no purpose or reason to exist. When the founders of the program are defaced by scandal and struggle with the facts and as a result and also their concept of reality, its time to pull the plug. Can you imagine this type of program taking place at any prestigious academic university? Compare the Falkirk Center with the Hoover Institution of Stanford and you will come to understand how shoddy and broken the Falkirk Center is. Or let me end this with another way of thinking about it. Jerry Falwell Sr said that if its Christian it ought to be better. The Falkirk Center fails to live up to those ideals just when you consider the name alone. End of story its time to pull the plug and put this disaster to bed.