There are a lot of politicians I don’t care for serving in Congress, but none of them make me want to pull my hair out nearly as much as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a New York Democrat, who seems to have the IQ of a toddler’s shoe size, all the while openly boasting about being a Democratic Socialist. Well, I guess the former explains the latter, doesn’t it?
Well, a new report from the Daily Wire has revealed that an organization that AOC is a member of has accepted a number of substantial donations from ByteDance, the Chinese parent company that owns social media platform TikTok, which, as it just so happens, the New York Democrat defended from a potential nationwide ban.
“Jake Denton, a technology policy expert at the Heritage Foundation, noted that Ocasio-Cortez is a member of the advisory council for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, a nonprofit entity that received $150,000 at the end of last year from ByteDance, according to a lobbying contribution report. ‘What a coincidence,’ Denton said on social media,” the report said.
“Ocasio-Cortez recently remarked on TikTok that a ban of the platform over national security and privacy concerns would be ‘unprecedented’ and said that such a move does not ‘really 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 do not know about.’ She added that lawmakers should instead pass a broader data privacy bill for social media firms,” the report continued.
“The United States is one of the only developed nations in the world that has no significant data or privacy protection laws on the books,” she prattled on, asserting that regulators should “actually protect Americans from this kind of egregious data harvesting that companies can do without your significant ability to say no.”
The Daily Wire said, “Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) has also publicly defended TikTok. He is a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, while his wife, Melissa Oppenheimer, has worked with the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, which also received $150,000 from ByteDance.”
“TikTok as a platform has created a community and a space for free speech for 150 million Americans and counting,” Bowman went on to state last week. “It is also a place where 5 million small businesses are selling their products and services and making a living.”
TikTok, which former President Donald Trump had considered banning close to the end of his term, has come under heavy scrutiny once again amid the increasingly strained relations between the U.S. and China. Current Commander-in-Chief Joe Biden, along with a few state officials, have already taken steps to ban the social media platform from government devices after reports came out that revealed employees at ByteDance working in China were using it to monitor the locations of specific users here in the United States.
Shou Zi Chew, the CEO for TikTok, delivered testimony before the House Energy and Commerce Committee just last week concerning the extent to which officials in China have authority and influence over TikTok and over ByteDance. He said that the latter is not an “agent of China or any other country.”
“I am well aware that the fact that ByteDance has Chinese founders has prompted concerns that our platform could be used as or become a tool of China or the Chinese Communist Party. There have even been calls to ban us or require divestment,” the executive went on to say during his testimony. “Divestment does not address the fundamental concerns that I have heard, as a change in ownership would not impose any new restrictions on data flows or access. This is not an issue of nationality.”
When he was pressed by lawmakers, Chew did not give a clear answer on whether individuals associated with ByteDance helped him to prepare his statements before giving his testimony. He did confess, however, that the same attorneys who represent TikTok, also represent ByteDance.
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