Facebook removes GOP lawmaker’s post for inciting violence
Rep. Clay Higgins (R-La.) suggested in a Facebook post on Tuesday that armed demonstrators in his state should be met with force, leading the social media platform to remove it for breaking its policies against inciting violence.
In the post on his campaign account, Higgins attached a photo of Black men with guns and wrote: “One way ticket fellas. Have your affairs in order. Me?… I wouldn’t even spill my beer. I’d drop any 10 of you where you stand.”
“Nothing personal. We just eliminate the threat. We don’t care what color you are. We don’t care if you’re left or right. If you show up like this, if We recognize threat… you won’t walk away,” Higgins continued.
Higgins further warned people “aggressively natured and armed in my presence” that “that is where your journey will end.”
A Facebook company spokesperson confirmed to The Hill that the post from Higgins was removed “for breaking our Violence and Incitement policies.”
Higgins also confirmed in a subsequent post that he had not removed his original message.
“No, I did not remove my post. America is being manipulated into a new era of government control. Your liberty is threatened from within,” Higgins wrote.
“Welcome to the front lines, Ladies and Gentlemen. I suggest you get your mind right. I’ll advise when it’s time gear up, mount up, and roll out,” he added.
The photo in Higgins’s since-removed post was from a demonstration this summer in Louisville, Ky., where a Black militia group was protesting the death of Breonna Taylor, who was shot by police in March.
Higgins is a vocal gun rights advocate, and his state allows people to openly carry firearms.
The Facebook posts from Higgins came amid protests in Lafayette, La., over the death of Trayford Pellerin, a Black man who was killed by police on Aug. 21.
Roughly 40 to 50 armed members of a right-wing militia group — who appeared to be all or mostly white men — showed up at a peaceful Black Lives Matter demonstration on Tuesday night outside Lafayette City Hall, according to the Acadiana Advocate.
It’s not the first time Higgins has drawn scrutiny for inflammatory social media posts.
In 2017, Higgins apologized for filming and posting a video inside a former gas chamber in the Auschwitz Nazi concentration camp.
That same year, Higgins wrote in another Facebook post after a terror attack in London that “not a single radicalized Islamic suspect should be granted any measure of quarter.”
“Their intended entry to the American homeland should be summarily denied. Every conceivable measure should be engaged to hunt them down. Hunt them, identity them, and kill them. Kill them all. For the sake of all that is good and righteous. Kill them all,” Higgins wrote.
The Hill has removed its comment section, as there are many other forums for readers to participate in the conversation. We invite you to join the discussion on Facebook and Twitter.