One Less Pal Using PayPal
PayPal recently blocked an account that was being used to fundraise for the Ku Klux Klan (KKK). As the BBC reports, PayPal has previously promised to shut down sites that are being used by racist organizations like the KKK but has been criticized for moving slowly on it.
PayPal founder Peter Thiel—a prominent supporter of President Donald Trump who spoke in support of Commander KFC at the 2016 Republican National Convention—has also expressed racist sentiments about Chinese infiltrators at Google and turned a blind eye to Trump’s undemocratic and racist policies.
On the other hand it seems fishy to start picking who is hate and who isn’t without a very official policy. Especially when it comes to who’s money is green, and who’s isn’t.
For example, if black nationalists who have a history of violence are fundraising on PayPal but are no longer violent should they be blocked? What if they argue they are simply fairly responding to the racial mistreatment of the past with their free speech? How is PayPal going to pick winners and losers? KKK is an easy target—they aren’t exactly popular and chances are they’re probably not loaded either. But what about when we get to groups who are more in the middle and offend some but inspire others? What if someone just wants to sell white robes for an epic toga dance party and gets mistaken as a crypto-Klansman?
Internet-based activist group Sleeping Giants is taking credit for flagging the KKK PayPal account but their spokesperson Nandini Jammi says PayPal isn’t acting quickly enough to shut down hate groups. PayPal? More like PayCrawl.
Jammi says there are many such groups raising money and using sites like PayPal to process it. Other sites that have been more proactive in responding to shutting down hate organizations and those promoting racism are Pinterest, Bumble and fundraising site Patreon according to Jammi. That inspiring quote you just posted on Pinterest has been duly noted, but did you know that it’s actually popular with Buddhist supremacists in Myanmar? Sorry – you’re out! As for Bumble, we can only imagine the situations where hate is flagged … The possibilities are endless.
As for PayPal – if they really take a firm stance on all hate groups chances are they’d soon run out of pals.