Where's the Outrage? Instagram Censors Photo of Black Man Exercising Constitutional Right


When can you censor the photo of a black person exercising a constitutional right?

When that right is conferred by the Second Amendment, of course.

According to a conservative writer, Instagram censored his post celebrating black gun owners, slapping a “sensitive content” warning on it despite the fact it merely showed a black man holding a handgun.

(At The Western Journal, we’ve chronicled how Big Tech is biased against conservatives and conservative causes — particularly when it comes to issues of gun rights or self-defense. We’ll continue standing up for your rights in the face of tech industry censorship. You can help us by subscribing.)

David Hookstead of the Daily Caller said the issue began when he took issue with a headline in the Los Angeles Times: “Is California ready for more Black people to legally carry guns in public?”

Missing 17-Year-Old Girl Found Dead After 'Devastating, Mind-Blowing' Discovery Next Door Brings Months-Long Search to an End

“If you find yourself worrying about more American citizens legally carrying guns and exercising their Second Amendment rights just because they’re minorities, congrats, you’re racist,” Hookstead said on Twitter.

The article, of course, was in reference to a Supreme Court decision that struck down a New York law that forced concealed carry applicants to show a cause to get a permit. California had a similar law — and black gun owners are celebrating, as rightly they should. But the Times apparently thought there would be an issue.

Did Instagram censor this post on purpose?

He posted this on Instagram — but the reception was a lot different, at least when it came to the censors.

“Instagram is censoring my post encouraging and supporting minorities to exercise their God-given Second Amendment rights,” he tweeted.

“What about this could possibly be offensive to anyone?”

50 Cent Tells Biden to 'Get the F*** Up' as POTUS Chills at Beach House While World Collapses

On Instagram — a platform owned by Meta, the dystopian new name of the parent corporation of Facebook — noted it “limit[s] access to certain content based on age, so we’ve hidden this photo from people who may be too young to view it.”

The photo from the Los Angeles Times piece shows a black man with a handgun cradled between his palms. The warning wasn’t there when we checked on Wednesday morning.

It’s unclear from Hookstead’s profile whether or not he received any kind of explanation from Instagram as for the age-restriction censorship notice.

“I have reached out to Instagram for a comment on why the company finds black Americans owning guns to be sensitive content that should be hidden from everyone,” he wrote.

We have reached out to Hookstead to see if he’s received a response from Instagram. However, that doesn’t exactly seem likely.

“I attempted to reach out to Instagram on the phone, and that quickly turned out to be a road to nowhere,” Hookstead wrote at the Daily Caller on Monday afternoon.

“Then, I fired off a pair of emails to the company asking how the hell this could ever be viewed as sensitive content.”

“So far, neither email has been responded to.”

Now, granted, Instagram’s algorithm could be unsophisticated enough that anything with a gun has the chance of being flagged as sensitive content and can only be viewed by people of a certain age. That’s just spitballing, though — and it still wouldn’t be a sufficient excuse for two reasons.

First, censoring posts featuring arms — a constitutionally protected right for Americans — based on the fact they warp the minds of youth is ridiculous, particularly given the source.

All manner of undress and obscenity can be found on the platform, arguably the most unhealthy and corrosive of the major social media networks. What do they choose to censor, either algorithmically or by choice? Responsible gun ownership, of course.

And then there’s the second problem with that explanation: A wide net to catch a lot of gun posts manages to catch posts like this, which have to do with … minority gun owners.

Whatever the case, it’s not a good look. It’s not a surprise, given Meta/Facebook’s track record and lack of accountability to conservatives. Perhaps now the left will get outraged now that it involves black gun owners specifically, as opposed to gun owners period. Probably not, but a man can always dream.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

, , , , , , , ,
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture