The news of billionaire Tesla CEO Elon Musk striking a deal to buy social media giant Twitter for $44 Billion USD garnered some dramatic reactions from left-wing Canadian political figures who use the popular platform.
Musk had previously criticized Twitter’s moderating practices, which have resulted in the company receiving multiple accusations of censorship over the years.
Following the news that Musk had struck a deal to buy the platform this week, the hashtag #leavingtwitter began trending on the platform
Among those who decided to take a break from Twitter over Musk’s purchase of the platform was Ottawa city councillor Shawn Menard, seen as one of the council’s most progressivist members.
Menard called Musk an “agitator” before his hiatus, though it appears his Twitter break did not last long.
Menard’s “non-binary” colleague Catherine McKenney also reacted to Musk buying Twitter, posting a screenshot of tweet from Jul. 2020 where Musk wrote “Pronouns suck.”
McKenney replied by declaring “(p)roudly they/them. But we have our collective good work cut out for us.”
On the federal level, NDP MP Peter Julian blasted Musk, saying the billionaire paid “no federal income taxes in 2018.” According to Julian, Musk’s ownership of Twitter would result in the platform seeing “increased hate & disinformation.”
NDP Leader Jahgmeet Singh posted a similar tweet, calling out billionaires whom he says have “no intention” of protecting people’s rights on social media. Singh did not. However, mention Musk specifically.
Other federal NDP politicians took aim at Musk, including Manitoba NDP MP Niki Ashton, who retweeted a satirical headline from Reductress that says “BREAKING: Man Makes Midlife Crisis Everybody’s Problem.”
Meanwhile, Alberta NDP MP Heather McPhearson shared a tweet from Aaron Hoyland calling out Musk for spending billions to purchase Twitter to allow for s**tposting “without consequences.”
Some former political figures also shared their thoughts on Musk acquiring Twitter, including former Ontario NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo, who is now the minister of a progressivist church in downtown Toronto.
She described Musk as a “Rich White Guy” and says Twitter activists will continue fighting “for the rest of us.”
DiNovo also wrote that she was “(a)mazed that everyone who pays their taxes aren’t outraged that all the Billionaires pay almost nothing .”
Justin Trudeau’s former principal secretary Gerald Butts also chimed in. He compared those who said they would leave the platform over Musk’s purchase of it to Americans who said they’d move to Canada if Bush, Obama or Trump won the election.
“Follow through will be weak.,” he prophesied.
Butts also said that “(r)ich guys have always wanted to own the dominant media of their day. The Elon story is as old as newspapers. Probably older.”
A big worry of many left-wingers, including those in the Joe Biden administration, is that Musk will allow former U.S. president Donald Trump to return to the platform. Trump was banned from Twitter in Jan. 2021, despite having almost 90 million followers.
However, Trump has said he won’t return to Twitter even if his account is reinstated, as he now has his own social media platform called TRUTH Social.