Banning TikTok Before 2024 Is A Terrible Idea
America's National Security is not at risk, but other things will be if the social media app is pulled from US stores
Dash Dobrofsky | The Gen Z Perspective
There are currently discussions in the United States Congress about enacting a national ban on TikTok — the short-form video hosting service that has taken young people across the world by storm.
The bill now sits on President Biden’s desk, giving him the sole authority to ban the Chinese-owned social media site from 100+ million American phones ahead of the 2024 elections.
Let’s be honest. Social media is one of the most addicting modern-day drugs of our time — without any warning labels/regulations on it whatsoever.
Also, it’s changing our culture drastically, when “connecting” with people has become easier to do online than in real life. These apps are taking a toll on our happiness — according to various studies, documentaries, books…what have you.
From a mental health perspective, there is definitely an argument to be had about placing restrictions on social media usage, in general.
But that’s not why Republicans are so dead-set on permanently banning TikTok from all US phones.
And it appears the Democrats who are getting on board with the ban — like Senators Chuck Schumer and Michael Bennett — are being played like a fiddle by Republicans.
Here’s one GOP Senator from Missouri claiming TikTok is a “Chinese AI weapon aimed at the United States.”
Senator Schmitt provided no evidence to back up this claim.
And here’s Josh Hawley — the other GOP Senator from Missouri — who had a “TikTok whistleblower” allege that ByteDance employees can “easily access” US TikTok users’ data.
(ByteDance is the Chinese-owned company that owns TikTok).
I will concede that ByteDance’s alleged data-mining is cause for slight concern. But if we’re being real with ourselves, every social media site is mining our data. From Mark Zuckerberg’s META/Facebook to Google.
But to claim TikTok is somehow a threat to our national security is preposterous — especially coming from Josh Hawley, who was one of the Senators that objected to the 2020 election results without any evidence of fraud — leading to the January 6th attack that completely jeopardized our national security.
Not only that, but the implementation of a national ban on TikTok will backfire against America’s democracy and national security, in more ways than one: