The Well Armed Woman Blog

We Will Not Be Silenced – Instagram Takes TWAW Down

In our digital world of blogs, websites, and e-commerce, the loss of your social media accounts such as Instagram, Facebook and Twitter can be catastrophic. It is, after all, how we connect, share, educate, inform and share products with our followers. Every business, influencer and media outlet who “lives” online uses social media and depends on it.  The ability to do so creates a level playing field, if you will.

The Well Armed Woman, after all, is about leveling the field for women against larger violent attackers. For us, the firearm is the tool used for leveling the field. For my business, social media levels the field by allowing us to reach and do business. We had used social media as our leveling tool, and it has been reliable for us for years. Well, so I thought!

On Saturday, August 17th, Instagram removed our page. Without any warning or notice, our page was taken down. There was no communication with us, and it remained that way for 6 days. Just like that, in an instant, we were gone. Gone from the fastest growing social media platform, and gone from our over 32,000 followers.

Instagram

Here is what I felt

  • Mad. Really, really mad.
  • Helpless. I had no say, no input, and no control. All I could do was submit an appeal to Instagram on my login page from which I was locked out. After that appeal, I never received a response.
  • Worried. Our livelihood depends on not only our ability to educate and inform, but to share our products and earn a living over our Social Media pages.
  • Scared. At the same time our Instagram page went down, we had our first ever deleted post and threat that our Facebook page could be removed.  We are still under this threat and have received multiple notifications in recent days. Our 450,000 Facebook fans could be gone in a flash!

Here is what I did

So, I went to work and contacted anyone and everyone I could think of for help. It was time to go to battle, and oh boy did we. Yes, we! People, companies, and organizations from every corner of the firearms industry pitched in. They went to work applying pressure on their social media contacts, wrote articles, shared information on other social platforms, and encouraged me throughout this mess. Fans and people who have never heard of The Well Armed Woman all pitched in and made some serious noise. So much so, that our Instagram page was back the following Thursday morning. Just as quickly as it disappeared, our page reappeared and was active. Again, there was no explanation or communication from Instagram.

Here are my takeaways from this whole mess:

  • Gun loving people are the best people in the world!
  • Together, we are strong and yield great influence.
  • Small firearms-related businesses and individuals have been removed in alarming numbers. Sadly, if they do not have the support or contacts from larger companies, influencers, and the gun-media that I am blessed to have, they are left without the means to demand and force their reinstatement.
  • The social media giants do not want our voices to be heard and they mean business!
  • This battle may be over, but the war rages on. We ARE being censored, we ARE being targeted and we ARE being silenced.

We as an industry and as Second Amendment patriots must find a way to create change. I am not sure how we do that just yet – but trust me, I am working on it!  If you have an idea, please share it in the comments and let’s get to work to find a way to demand change.

Here is what you can do to support

While this was going on and I was in full battle-mode, my staff, frustrated and worried,  designed the shirt below for pre-order purchase. I know these won’t solve the problem, but we all must find ways to show that We Will Not Be Silenced. Let’s make some noise!

Show your support and wear this shirt, put a picture online with #DontSilencethe2nd and #TWAWWontBeSilenced. With each order, we are including 5 free silicone rally bracelets to pass out to your friends and fellow 2nd amendment warriors.

Preorder on the We Won’t Be Silenced T-Shirt has closed.

Thank you, thank you all for the amazing support you showed me and The Well Armed Woman. I am moved beyond words and will never forget it.

Carrie

43 thoughts on “We Will Not Be Silenced – Instagram Takes TWAW Down

  1. Laurie Bailey says:

    When will these ship.

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      Hi Laurie, barring any unforeseen circumstances, the shirts should ship at the end of this week!

  2. Barbara Nabors says:

    There’s a disturbing trend of conservative viewpoints being silenced across social media platforms, including Second Amendment Patriots. Their social media accounts have been banned, blocked and canceled, often with no reason given. I’m glad to see so many people stepped up to advocate for your Instagram account, and as a result, it got reinstated. It’s frighteningly obvious that social media companies don’t believe in the First Amendment, and they are ready to ban accounts expressing viewpoints that don’t share their beliefs and values.
    Fox News often runs segments revealing how conservatives are being silenced by these social media companies. If this continues to happen, I would suggest to also contact FOX News. I’m sure they would be interested in hearing from you.

  3. waldecksx6 says:

    Where is the link to pre-order these shirts?

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      I am sorry, Preorder has ended. There may be an opportunity to purchase after current preorders are filled. The product page will be brought back up in that case. Thank you.

  4. Lisa Fisk says:

    I’ve spent years keeping a very low profile on social media about my thoughts, beliefs, and rights. Kind of like voting: my choice, my decision, and my right.

    Standing by and watching as anti-2A groups/organizations encroach more and more on the rest of us didn’t help maintain our rights. All it does is turn us into boiled frogs … cold water that gets turned up a little at a time until the frog is dead.

    The time has come for me to stand up for me … It’s time to be proud of who we as a nation are/were. It’s time to be heard.

    I go to the range at least once a week. I belong to TWAW Shooting Chapters. I’m a member of the NRA.

    Thanks for leading the charge and maintaining the light in the darkness.

    Let’s light up the world.

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      Thank you Lisa! Yes, let’s light up the world!!

  5. Liz V. says:

    Have you considered reaching out to Steven Crowder (LouderWith Crowder)?
    He has been fighting against being shut down on Twitter, censored with targeted throttling on Facebook, de-monitized on YouTube, etc. with his lawyer, Bill Richmond. He may have some insight on what steps can be taken now, and in the future, to protect your social media accounts. He might be someone who can bring much greater attention to what has happened to you with Instagram, and what is happening to you with Facebook.

    I know one goal of him and his lawyer is to have a final determination made stating for different social media companies “are they publishers or platforms?” If they’re publishers, then they are liable for anything published through their services. If they’re platforms, then they’re not liable for what people publish, and there is no reason for them to censor anything that isn’t already illegal under the law.

  6. Jillian says:

    How dare they ! I heard and a beyond appalled I am Ordering a shirt right now !! I have vowed to NEVER be a victim again ! I will rapidly , ans boldly wear it Proudly!
    Thank you Carrie !!

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      Thank YOU, Jullian. Our collective voices are powerful!

  7. Jillian says:

    Ordering a shirt right now !! Never s Bixtim again ! Thank you Carrie !!

  8. Tammy Weaver says:

    Glad to hear the Instagram acct is back up but we are all still under attack in every venue. These battles are not going to be won sitting on the couch. We all must get involved in our state and local governments- go to
    Council meetings, know what is going on in your state and be very vocal and active in protecting our rights. This is not the time to let others do the work for us. We must stand up and demand our rights not be trampled underfoot. These are historic times- let not our rights be left behind and become “history”.

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      I totally agree with you Tammy. We all really do need to be involved both locally and nationally.

  9. Donna Getts says:

    Ordered mine immediately!

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      <3 Thanks Donna!

  10. J says:

    Standing with you, Carrie. Placed my order!

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      Thank you J. We all need to stand together!

  11. Rhonda Allen says:

    Ordered his & hers! As always, you have my full support.

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      You and Barry are the best!!!

  12. Jennifer Brooks says:

    I think it’s important to find out why the Instagram page was shut down, and why it was put back up. We’re making assumptions. They may be true, but I want to know for sure. I just don’t see what Instagram has to gain by taking down the page without notice.

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      Hi Jennifer,

      We would like to know exactly how we violated their policies as well. Unfortunately, we have reached out and have heard nothing back. Our posts have never been removed before and nothing out of our usual realm was posted. We are hoping to find out more information so we can prevent this from happening again!

    2. Marcy Jankovich says:

      Jennifer, we are in a culture war. Please read Brave New World by Aldous Huxley. The people in charge of those platforms want our guns and they are engaged in psychological warfare. The tactic is to shut us up. If this happened here or there that would be one thing, but it is happening to conservatives over and over. My son posted a Proud Boy pic of two pickup trucks full of Christmas toys for two families on hard times. NOTHING racist or even political was mentioned…but THAT post did not meet “community standards ” that are NEVER DEFINED. Carrie is right. We must fight this at every front. The user agreements cut both ways and we must call them on it whenever they breach their part of the contract.

    3. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      I agree. I still have no answers and have heard nothing from them. I have no idea why it was shut down, or how and why it “miraculously just re-appeared.

  13. Chris A says:

    Carrie, I thought this was very interesting. About a month ago, I watched a YouTube video by ZDoggMD. It was regarding the orchestrated attack against doctors that vaccinate children. One doctor/group is working on how doctors can protect themselves against social media and rating site attacks.
    I think that these censorship groups are learning tactics from each other. Now, we need to learn how to keep our freedom of speech.

    1. Marcy Jankovich says:

      Carrie, you are such a wise woman.

      1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

        You are sweet Marcy. I don’t know how wise I am, but I do know that we as gun-owning Americans need to demand change!

  14. JoyceK says:

    Rock on Carrie! We were spreading the word on FaceBook that your Instagram account had been taken down! SO happy to know it is back, although I don’t use Instagram, it still made me fighting mad. I have been a customer since you started your online business and just made several purchases from you, because I like what you do and what you stand for. We are behind you, sister! Next time, email ALL of us and let us know who to contact on your behalf!

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      Thank you Joyce! I am so grateful to have your support.

  15. Yolonde Holt says:

    We will stand with you, Carrie…..

    We will not be silenced….

    Thank you for your tremendous efforts on behalf of all Americans.

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      Thank you Yolonde!! I am so honored to have such amazing warriors by my side!

  16. Judy H Sullivan says:

    I like the shirt, but… It’s just me, but I think WE WILL NOT had more impact than WE WON”T.. I get it’s because it fits better on the shirt, but we nned impact ! So glad everyone rose up in your defense !

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      Oh, I think you are right Judy! Everything happened so fast but I agree We Will Not is more impactful!

    2. ROBERT MERRITT says:

      I agree. I just found out about this organization this morning. I heard about
      it on “ Gun talk radio” pod cast, 9-01-19. We will not let these spoiled bullies
      silence us. Keep diligent, informed and educated with 2A issues. VOTE whenever possible, contact elected officials, and tell them how you feel about
      issues. Sawdust Bob r2t2 Merritt. God Bless you, Carrie!

  17. Sheila Boisvert Scholler says:

    Carrie, received this from a friend oh so true. Posted! Help me Understand the Logic of This!
    Is logic the same thing as common sense?

    1. Eleven teens die each day because of texting while driving. Maybe it’s time to raise the age of smartphone ownership to 21?
    2. If gun control laws actually worked, Chicago would be Mayberry.
    3. The second amendment makes more woman equal than the entire feminist movement.
    4. Legal gun owners have 300 million guns, and probably a trillion rounds of ammo. Seriously folks if we were the problem you would know it.
    5. When JFK was killed nobody blamed the rifle.
    6. The NRA murders 0 people and receives $0 in government funds. Planned parenthood kills 350,000 babies every year and receives $500,000,000 in tax dollars annually.
    7. I have no problem with the vigorous background checks when it comes to firearms. While we’re at it lets do the same when it comes to immigration, voter I.D., Candidates running for office, also welfare recipients.
    8. You don’t need a smoke detector, that’s what the Fire Department is for. Now if you think that sounds stupid, now you know how I feel when you say I don’t need a gun.
    9. Folks keep talking about another Civil War. One side knows how to shoot and has a trillion bullets, the other side has crying closets and is confused about which bathroom to use. How do you think that’s going to end?
    10. Please pass it on!

    1. Me says:

      We don’t need to attack other people’s rights in protecting our own. If you leave the attacks on abortion and transgender rights out of your message, you’ll find it is much less divisive to our gun rights loving community.

    2. Wylie Wolf says:

      Beautiful!

    3. Denise L says:

      I love, love, love this!!!! I’ll be using it as well. Thank you so much for putting this out there….gotta go order my shirt!

    4. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      There is a lot of sense in this Shelia!

  18. Cantrelle Anderson says:

    These giant social media companies thought they could be slick shadowbanning people and get away with it.
    They had no idea they would piss off the wrong women.
    They should be ashamed of themselves.
    Glad you guys got your Instagram page back.

  19. Susan Ottati says:

    Ordering a shirt right now….and spreading the word.
    Thank you Carrie!

  20. Melanie Smith says:

    So happy that your Instagram page has been restored! I kept asking people how we could contact Instagram as individuals who cared. Someone finally was able to send me a place to email. But when I emailed that link at support @Instagram .com, I got an email back saying ” this was a channel they no longer supported”, grrrrrrr! Nothing on their site seemed to allow contact. So glad influencers went to bat for you! And when you find out what we, the average follower can do to help in this battle, please let us know!

    1. Carrie Lightfoot says:

      The last thing they want is to be held accountable Melanie and they put up every possible barrier. Thank you for your support!

  21. C says:

    This is also happening to the Peoples Pharmancy and Dr Mercola. They both have brought out the facts of the dangers of different drugs being prescribed and their serious side effects.. as well as other veiws.
    They were buried by Google. Mercola just left facebook.
    The propaganda the america citizens are being fed is outrageous.
    We are no longer free when we have to register both guns AND rifles and we now have a government that can declare marshall law and take both our guns and rifles as they did after katrina.

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