By Linda Sutter – March 23, 2023
On rare occasions do you ever witness a bi-partisan congressional hearing where both sides of the fence are joined together? But today, our congress asked appropriate questions about TikTok.
Dr. Shou Chew is the CEO of TikTok and is currently under congressional scrutiny regarding TikTok policies, regulations and procedures. TikTok offices are in Singapore and Los Angeles.
First and foremost it must be mentioned that Mr. Chew received $1.5 billion dollars from the United States for the business of TikTok.
The question was asked, what is the $1.5 billion used for? That question went unanswered. It is worthy to note TicTok has 1500 employees. It was not clear if that was both in Singapore and the United States.
The pressing issue is this. TikTok is owned by Byte Dance, a Beijiing based Corporate owner that is subject to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). This corporation is subject to Chinese data laws.
What does that mean? It is very likely that the CCP are using our youth to collect data on Americans. But there are other concerns about their policies and their inability to regulate their policies.
During the congressional hearing a video was submitted and seen by the congress. The video depicts an 18 year old youth playing with a loaded weapon while video taping herself for Tik Tok. The gun went off and she died. This video was left on Tik Tok, and while it is no longer currently available, it was seen by many before taken down.
Kids under the age of 17 are not allowed to stay on Tik Tok for more than 60 minutes. But Tik Tok does not follow through with their policies. Tik Tok allows challenges that end in death and could not give the statistics of how many Americans have died due to these challenges.
It was well noted in the congressional hearings that Challenges resulting in death are not allowed in China, but are allowed in America.
Already there are protests in some cities asking not to ban Tik Tok. Outside the capitol, Representative Jamaal Bowman (D-NY), Mark Pocan, (D-Wisconsin), and Robert Garcia, (D-California), stood with protesters where Bowman claimed, “Republicans are racist against China” and that’s why they want to keep Tik Tok. Maybe Jamaal should have been inside where the bi-partisan congressional hearings were taking place and where the Democrats AND Republicans voiced the same concerns.
Most people understand our freedom of speech. The first right amendment. However, even within the First Right Amendment you can’t yell “FIRE” in a theater. Those who do not understand common sense are standing on the sidelines protesting for unreasonable accommodations before understanding what is involved.
There is no doubt that if we are to keep Tik Tok major changes need to be addressed to keep our youth safe, the security of our country safe while following the guidelines of the First Right Amendment.