AOC backs TikTok in first video after national security concerns

AOC backs TikTok in first video after national security concerns

Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N. Y., expressed support for TikTok in her first video shared to the Chinese platform after major national security concerns raised during a House hearing last week.

This is not only my first TikTok, but this is my first TikTok about TikTok. The CEO of TikTok came to Congress this week and said there was growing rumblings and discussion over a nationwide ban on the app. Do you think TikTok should be banned? Ocasio-Cortez, using the handle aocinthehouse, said in the video that had garnered more than 2.9 million views as of Sunday.

In response to the video, an unnamed senior member of New York s congressional delegation said, AOC clearly stands for Ambassador of China. During the closely watched House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing Thursday, TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew was challenged by U.S. lawmakers for allegedly downplaying the platform and parent company ByteDance's ties to the Chinese Communist Party, as well as the risks the algorithm poses for American children.

Despite congressional members voicing bipartisan doubts about the platform's ability to safeguard Americans' privacy, Chew said that the Texas Project will eventually safely store U.S. user data on American soil. The Department of Justice is investigating ByteDance for allegedly spying on American journalists, and FBI Director Chris Wray expressed national security concerns over TikTok's ability to drive narratives and divide the American people at a separate hearing earlier this month.

Why should TikTok be banned? Ocasio-Cortez shared her first TikTok shared Saturday, and I think it is important to discuss how unprecedented of a move this would be. The United States has never before banned a social media company from existence, operating in our borders, and this is an app that has over 150 million Americans on it. Some of the arguments about banning TikTok have been based on discussions around Chinese surveillance and the use of data that is tracked, and the enormous amount of tracking on U.S. citizens and data that is collected by TikTok. The Democratic socialist congresswoman said that because of this egregious amount of data harvesting, we should ban this app. That does not address the core of the issue, which is the fact that major social media companies are allowed to collect troves of deeply personal data about you that you don't know about without any significant regulation whatsoever. Ocasio-Cortez argued that the matter was more of a policy issue, noting that the United States is one of the few developed nations in the world with no significant data or privacy protection laws on the books. When the United States is proposing a major move that has significant risks to national security, one of the things that happens is that Congress gets a classified briefing, downplaying the voiced risks, she said. I can tell you that Congress hasn't received a classified briefing on the allegations of national security risks regarding TikTok. Why would you propose a ban on such a significant issue without being clued in on this at all?