Facebook page comes down after threat to lawmaker
May 9th, 2013
06:34 PM ET

Facebook page comes down after threat to lawmaker

By Barbara Starr

A Facebook page with sexually explicit comments denigrating female Marines was taken down after a congresswoman who complained about it was threatened on that site, an aide to the lawmaker told CNN.

Rep. Jackie Speier, D-California, made public a letter she wrote to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos on Wednesday about "F'N Wook" and others like it, asking them to review them and take action.

A Speier staffer told CNN on Thursday the page was taken down after her office made Facebook aware of threatening remarks about her that the aide said appeared on that site.

The staffer asked not to be named because the Capitol Police have asked aides not to discuss the matter publicly.  Capitol Police had no comment.

The aide said Facebook did not confirm to Speier's office that the company was responsible for taking the page down, but it disappeared shortly after the office complained.

"We cannot comment on specific pages on-the-record," Facebook spokesman Fred Wolens said.

In the letter, Speier said the "humor" expressed on this page and similar pages ... contribute to a culture that permits and seems to encourage sexual assault and abuse."

The military has long been aware of many sexually inappropriate social media sites that claim to be administered by members of the military or have comments posted by military members.

But unless it can prove military personnel are actually involved in such social media activity there is little the military can do.

A spokeswoman for Hagel said he would respond to Speier as appropriate.

Although there was no confirmation that the site in question was linked to Marines, a Corps statement said that Marines are responsible for all content they publish on social networking, blogs or other websites.

"There is no tolerance for discriminatory comments. It goes against good order and discipline," the statement said.

Speier's aide said a whistleblower brought some of the websites to the attention of her congressional office.

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  11. robert north

    Who decides where the lines are drawn when it comes to censorship? I always believed we had a right to freedom of expression? I am perfectly content to let some people use that right to demonstrate their own idiocy, rather that having someone else decide what I am allowed to read, or write.

    May 13, 2013 at 12:37 am | Reply
    • americanjello

      When it's on facebook's website, facebook does. the first amendment does not apply in this case. hope this helps.

      May 14, 2013 at 6:47 pm | Reply
    • Eric

      Robert, military personnel do not always have the rights that the general public does. They sacrifice some of those rights in the contract they sign to serve.

      I believe the page was being looked into because it was suspected that members of the military had created or were posting to it, or both. The page's content was contrary to and in violation of the oath taken by military personnel. If it was a civilian-use page, there is nothing the government could have done about it.

      May 14, 2013 at 10:09 pm | Reply
  12. gadlaw2012

    There needs to be a better effort to identify those responsible for this website and hold them accountable. You have freedom of speech but you do not have freedom from the consequences of that speech. Members of the US Military represent our country and those who have no respect for women and who threaten Congressmen or other women have no place in the military.

    May 12, 2013 at 10:49 am | Reply
  13. Geryuj Sdfhjm

    Corporations took free speech a common practice.

    May 11, 2013 at 11:47 pm | Reply
  14. jester avrgjoe

    What ever happen to free speech in this country?

    May 11, 2013 at 10:02 pm | Reply
    • USMC1371

      Really?????? This is not about free speech its about accountability of the words that ar e used.

      May 12, 2013 at 4:47 pm | Reply
      • robert north

        And exactly who decides what words we're allowed to use, or read? I guess in the case the decider was Rep. Jackie Speier. Thank you anyway Rep. Speier, but I would rather decide for myself.

        May 13, 2013 at 12:50 am |
      • poltergiest

        Then do not join the marines.

        May 13, 2013 at 7:41 am |
    • Eric

      jester: Generally, freedom of speech can only be infringed upon by the government, meaning that only the state or an agent of the state can be held to have violated your First Amendment rights.

      For example, if you walk into Macy's wearing a Bloomingdale hoodie, Macy's can kick you out. Or, if you go to Disney World, Disney World can tell you not to speak while in the park, or they will force you to leave.

      In neither case were your First Amendment rights violated, because Macy's and Disney are not the government, and have no obligation to allow you to say anything you'd like, or to speak at all.

      May 14, 2013 at 10:15 pm | Reply
  15. USMC 1st SGT

    DAMN!!

    May 11, 2013 at 1:00 am | Reply
  16. john smith

    So much for freedom of speech

    May 10, 2013 at 3:51 pm | Reply
  17. Kdghk Nsfgj

    You cannot threaten a member of congress but corporations probably can get away with it. Ask yourself where did the money for the Public offering of Facebook actualy come from who was really in charge. ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF AMERICA BEING INCOHERENT. "Corporations are People my friend."

    May 10, 2013 at 2:33 pm | Reply
    • Eric

      Corporations ARE people, my friend. Why, just the other day, I saw a corporation and it's wife out for a walk with their new twins and their puppy.

      Oh wait, I guess corporations aren't people, as any fool can see (except SCOTUS, that is).

      May 14, 2013 at 10:18 pm | Reply
  18. Jftulty Fdrgyio

    It boggles the mind...or does it...Fasists as far as the mind can see and America is run by them. Good luck... facebook CEO is also an Israelie. My money (so to speak) is with the establishment.

    May 9, 2013 at 10:35 pm | Reply
    • Jake

      what?!

      May 9, 2013 at 11:56 pm | Reply
    • Jomama

      Need to explain a bit more.No offense.

      May 10, 2013 at 4:39 am | Reply

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