Facebook has banned the Facebook and Instagram accounts of a white nationalist who attended the rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, that ended in deadly violence.
FB spokeswoman Ruchika Budhraja tells The Associated Press that the profile pages of Christopher Cantwell have been removed as well as a page connected to his podcast. Facebook has also removed at least eight pages connected to the white nationalist movement over what Budhraja says were violations on the company’s polices on hate speech and organizations.
Cantwell says Facebook shut down his account in an attempt to silence him for his views. The company wouldn’t confirm that because it has a policy of not commenting on the status of accounts.
“I’m not surprised by almost any of this because the whole thing we are complaining about here is that we are trying to express our views, and everybody is going through extraordinary lengths to make sure we are not heard,” Cantwell said in a phone interview from an undisclosed location.
“Frankly, whatever you think of my views, that is very scary to me,” he said. “Facebook and Instagram is one thing but not being able to participate in the financial system because of your political opinions is something that, you know, people should worry about in America.”
Cantwell was listed on online fliers promoting the rally. The Keene, New Hampshire, man has been labeled an extremist by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
PayPal (PYPL) has stopped processing financial contributions and handling other transactions for more than three dozen hate groups and other extremist organizations, CBS News reported Wednesday. The groups include Unity and Security for America, which is operated by an organizer of the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, and Altright.com, a white nationalist organization led by Richard Spencer.