Madonna, who is no stranger to controversy during her long career, was doing what she does best when she posted a video that landed her in trouble with Silicon Valley censors.
The pop star got flagged on Instagram for posting a video of an event from the America’s Frontline Doctors press conference this week the Breitbart News covered, in which physicians addressed the pervasive climate of fear that they believe has obscured important facts about the Chinese coronavirus.
In her post, Madonna praised Dr. Stella Immanuel, the Houston physician who says she has treated 350 coronavirus patients with hydroxychloroquine.
— Megan #FREEAssange (@GraffitiExpert) July 29, 2020
“The truth will set us all free,” Madonna wrote, according to screen shots of her now-deleted Instagram post. “But some people don’t want to hear the truth. Especially the people in power who stand to make money from this long drawn out search for a vaccine. Which has been proven and available for months. They would rather let fear control them and let the rich get richer and the poor and sick get sicker.”
“This woman is my hero,” Madonna concluded, referring to Dr. Immanuel.
Tech censors soon cracked down on the pop star. Instagram first blurred the video and added a “False Information” label, according to multiple reports.
Instagram then removed the post altogether, saying it had been reviewed by “independent fact checkers.” Facebook, which owns Instagram, has been stepping up its fact-checking efforts on the photo-sharing platform, relying on a network of outside fact-checking organizations that are mostly left-leaning.
A spokesperson for Instagram told The Guardian that Madonna’s post was deleted “for making false claims about cures and prevention methods for Covid-19.”
Madonna revealed in May that she got tested and discovered that she had antibodies for the coronavirus.
Most of Silicon Valley’s social media giants have censored the video of the doctors’ press conference, including Facebook, Twitter, and Google/YouTube. The video accumulated more than 17 million views during the eight hours it was hosted on Facebook, with more than 185,000 concurrent viewers, making it the second most-engaged post on Facebook that day.
President Donald Trump defended the physicians during a recent press conference. “I don’t know why, I think they are very respected doctors,” the president said when asked about the social media companies removing the videos.
On the subject of hydroxychloroquine, the president said: “Many doctors think it’s extremely good and some people don’t. Some people, I think, it’s become very political. I happen to believe in it.”
A study from Henry Ford Health System in Michigan found earlier this month that hospitalized COVID-19 patients who were given hydroxychloroquine were much less likely to die than those who didn’t receive the medication.