Life without TikTok Is Possible

The U.S. wants to ban TikTok because it fears large-scale data espionage. It’s the right call. The U.S. should ban the social network as long as Beijing has access to it.

The United States has a habit of using national security interests to justify crude protectionism. Some free trade advocates will vividly remember an attempt by Republican senators to stop importing Chinese garlic for precisely this reason. Import taxes and quotas for steel and aluminum, even from allied Europe, are a real and costly frustration.

Why import restrictions on solar panels serve national security remains a mystery known only to politicians.

But things look different with TikTok. No one should trust that Beijing’s state apparatus is keeping its hands off the powerful social media platform that has 1 billion users worldwide.

The idea that the Chinese Communist Party is taking control of TikTok algorithms to push content it prefers and to mislead especially young users is simply unbearable. Life without TikTok is possible. India is proof of that. After India banned the platform, less threatening media stepped in to fill the gap.

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