Should politicians be allowed to block constituents on social media?
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Should politicians be allowed to block constituents on social media?

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A federal judge ruled President Trump cannot block users from his Twitter feed, arguing it violates the First Amendment. Constitutional lawyers have debated whether Trump should be allowed to block users, arguing it is akin to kicking citizens out of a public space or town hall meeting because of their political viewpoints. But others say that's ridiculous—politicians should not be compelled to communicate with anyone, and they should be allowed to block trolls. What do you think?📱

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A federal judge ruled President Trump cannot block users on Twitter because it violates the First Amendment.

Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald, of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, said President Trump’s Twitter account is a public forum and blocking people who reply to his tweets with differing opinions constitutes viewpoint discrimination, which violates the First Amendment.

Many support the judge's ruling and believe politicians should not be allowed to block their constituents on social media.

After President Trump blocked Holly Figueroa O'Reilly on Twitter, she claimed in The Washington Post that her constitutional rights were violated and threatened to take the president to court if he didn't unblock her.

The president of the United States, the leader of the free world, has blocked me on Twitter. Did I make death threats against him? Did I use foul language or threaten his family? Of course not. President Trump is violating my constitutional rights by blocking me on Twitter...This is what dictators and fascists do.

Elected officials forfeit the right to block individuals, and doing so is akin to kicking citizens out of a public space or town hall meeting because of their political viewpoints. Not President Trump nor any other politician has the right to do that.

But others feel the ruling is unfair. Politicians, like anyone else, should be allowed to block trolls. Especially if people are threatening them on social media. 

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) brought a lawsuit against four Georgia government officials, demanding they stop "censoring their critics" by blocking them on social media. But some officials defended themselves, claiming they should be allowed to block trolls and bots.

If users are being abusive, why should politicians be forced to engage with them? Then again, Mayor Reed has blocked a number of journalists and constituents for being critical of him. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

Reed has built a Twitter following of more than 414,000 users — more than any other U.S. mayor, he often says, except for New York’s Bill de Blasio. He’s also aggressively blocked detractors on Twitter, including journalists, political analysts and others who have lobbed critiques about him.
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