Should the United States Government Ban TikTok?
In 2020, Trump announced he would seek to ban the Chinese social media app TikTok. While his proposal at the time did not lead to a ban, President Biden recently demanded the app either be sold to a United States company or be banned. Given the huge number of Americans who use TikTok, the issue has jumped to the forefront of current events.
Those who argue that the United States government should ban TikTok contend that China is a rising power who poses a large threat to the United States. They say that while the Chinese government doesn’t own ByteDance—the company who created TikTok—it still has the power to collect all the data that the app has garnered on its American users. They argue that China has shown no qualms with using data to track its own citizens and suppress opposition, and so the U.S. should be concerned about China obtaining information on American citizens. They claim that due to the huge number of Americans who use TikTok—especially impressionable children and teenagers—the Chinese government could heavily influence our citizenry through what content it promotes and suppresses.
Those who argue that the United States government should not ban TikTok contend that to do so would be a threat to liberties and prosperity at home. They argue that allowing the government to ban an entire app would violate freedom of speech and expression. They claim while there may be some valid national security concerns with TikTok, it is not enough to justify a ban—and that doing so would set a dangerous precedent where the government could suppress more apps in the future. They also claim that given the large number of influencers and viewers on TikTok, banning the app would negatively impact those who depend on the app to make a living as well as the various companies and entities that use TikTok for advertising and promotions.
So, what do you think? Should the United States Government Ban TikTok? Students can answer Yes, it should; No, it should not; or a nuanced answer in between! Be sure to submit your answers by April 12th to have a chance to win this week’s contest!
Note: Ideal Think the Vote responses include the following:
- Address the question asked in a thoughtful and meaningful manner
- Use cited facts and constitutional arguments when appropriate to support their answers
- Are expressed in cohesive sentences and are free of distracting spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors
- They address counterarguments and opposing concerns in a respectful manner
- They organize their answer in a manner that flows logically and reads clearly
JOIN THE DEBATE BELOW FOR A CHANCE TO WIN A $1,000 CASH SCHOLARSHIP!
For this question, BRI will be giving away two $25 gift cards, one to each person providing the best defense of each side of the debate. Both students will also win BRI swag. Each student winner will also be entered for a chance to win a grand prize of a $1,000 cash scholarship. Additionally, the referring teachers for both students will each win a $25 gift card and BRI swag.
This question will run from 3/30/23 to 4/12/23, so be sure to submit your answers in time to be considered for our prizes!