After giving up on the border crisis and Ukraine, Kamala Harris seems to have found a much faster problem: online slurs.
Last week, Harris announced the launch of the White House Task Force to Combat Online Harassment and Abuse, which will be managed by President Biden’s Gender Policy Council. Still exhausted?
Interestingly, the task force will be co-chaired by the National Security Council. NSC members include Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Attorney General Merrick Garland, Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra, and Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas.
Mayorkas previously attempted to form a disinformation council, which was scrapped when background information emerged about its proposed leader Nina Jankowicz, who revealed that she herself had been involved in several disinformation campaigns.
But the Disinformation Board wasn’t dead yet – it was just renamed with the same players, minus Jankowicz, and is now run by Veep herself.
Much of the same language used to describe the Disinformation Council has been echoed by the task force to tackle online harassment, including the involvement of social media platforms and private entities. This was revealed by Sen. Chuck Grassley last week in a DHS memo that contradicted numerous statements by Mayorkas and Jankowicz regarding the Council’s jurisdiction. Jankowicz had claimed that the Disinformation Council would focus on national issues such as migration and the spread of “disinformation” around events on home soil, specifically citing the mass shooting at a Buffalo grocery store.
And that’s exactly what a senior administration official told CNN would be the goal of the newly formed task force. According to CNN:
The recommendations, according to the senior administration official, will focus on increasing support for survivors of online harassment and abuse, expanding research into the problem, improving prevention efforts and strengthening liability of offenders and platforms. The official noted that the administration believes it is crucial to understand the “connection between online misogyny and radicalization to violence,” noting recent mass violence like the supermarket shootings in Buffalo, New York.
What does “accountability” look like for platforms? And who makes these decisions about what qualifies as online abuse and harassment? The language and mission statement of the Harris Task Force is eerily similar to that of the Disinformation Board. It seems the Biden administration has no intention of shelving its half-baked idea to tackle what it sees as misinformation — or, more frankly, stories and information that the administration do not like.
At the task force’s launch event, Harris introduced tennis player Sloane Stephens, who said, “I’m a daughter, a sister, a wife. And I’m more than an athlete, more than a label. Yet all of this is ignored when people online seek to harass and harm me. It doesn’t matter if I win or lose, someone online is crazy, and they’ll let it be known.
It does appear that a government council has been formed to monitor mean things said to famous people on Twitter. Attorney General Garland narrowed the council’s focus, citing the need to tackle online harassment — which is a bit different from mean Instagram comments and tweets. “We pledge to relentlessly investigate these crimes, bring those who commit them to justice and provide support to survivors,” he said.
But Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, who also attended the event, said: “It can no longer be acceptable for a technology company to release a product and shirk responsibility for its impact on users and communities. . It can no longer be acceptable that social media platforms are a breeding ground for hate. »
This is a fundamental misunderstanding of what the internet is, how it works and how freedom of expression is protected. This is consistent with Nina Jankowicz’s own statements about what qualifies as harassment and “bad faith” (a preferred terminology among the political left and journalists).
The focus of this task force seems less focused on stopping crime and more on stopping critics and trolls of the administration. Again, Garland and Mayorkas should be called to testify before Congress on exactly what all of this will entail.
Kamala Harris’ zombie disinformation panel appeared first on The Spectator World.