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Standing Together in the Face of Censorship: A Call to Protect Religious Expression and Free Speech

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The de-platforming of Your Catholic Voice Foundation, Catholic Online and our associated projects by its service provider marks a chilling moment not just for the community directly involved, but for the broader discourse surrounding freedom of speech and religious expression. This decision, justified by the provider on the grounds of the content being classified as "hate speech," strikes at the very heart of what it means to live in a society that values diversity of thought, belief, and expression.

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Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you.

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Photo credit: GDJ

Photo credit: GDJ

Highlights

By Catholic Online (California Network)
2/13/2024 (2 months ago)

Published in Living Faith

Keywords: Censorship, Catholic, attack

List of Projects:

  • Your Catholic Voice Foundation

  • Catholic Online Shopping

  • Catholic Online Learning Resources

  • Catholic Online Virtual Prayer Candles

  • Montana Ranch and Cattle Company

Catholic Online has long been a beacon for those of the Roman Catholic faith and others interested in its teachings, offering resources, guidance, and a sense of community in the digital age. The projects under its umbrella have aimed to enlighten, educate, and foster a deeper understanding of faith, touching the lives of millions around the globe. To see such efforts suddenly labeled as hate speech is not only disheartening but deeply troubling.

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This action raises profound questions about the criteria used to define hate speech and the implications for religious organizations and individuals striving to share their beliefs. The term "hate speech," inherently subjective, requires careful consideration and balance, especially when applied to religious content. The risk of silencing voices that seek to share centuries-old teachings and perspectives on life, morality, and spirituality under this label cannot be overstated.

The emotional toll on the Catholic Online community and its contributors is immense. Imagine dedicating your life to sharing teachings you believe to be of ultimate importance, only to be told that your voice is not only unwelcome but equated with hatred. This is a painful reminder of the fragility of digital platforms as spaces for free expression and the power wielded by those who control access to these platforms.

Moreover, this situation opens up a larger conversation about the role of service providers in moderating content and the fine line between preventing harm and censoring legitimate religious or ideological expression. Where should the line be drawn? And who gets to decide? The implications of this decision extend far beyond Catholic Online, affecting every individual and group that relies on digital platforms to share their voice.

Your support is now necessary more than ever to restore these Catholic services to millions around the world. We are committed to overcoming this challenge and appreciate your unwavering support.

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So this is clear, our data was not compromised. We are hard at work restoring all our websites. We should be back up online in about 2 weeks. Thank you for your understanding, support, and patience.

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Deacon Keith Fournier Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you. Help Now >

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