Politicians and the legacy media should be able to know the real name and physical location of every individual who posts any negative comment about them on any online platform, said CNN’s Don Lemon on Tuesday night. He added that social media platforms should only allow people to post their “opinion” if it is “true.”
“If someone says something about me, I should know that it’s Joe Smith who lives in Wisconsin,” said Lemon as he bantered with Chris Cuomo at the opening of Lemon’s eponymous show. “You shouldn’t be allowed to just bully people with, you know, with no defense.”
During the hand-off, the two hosts discussed the testimony of Facebook “whistleblower” Frances Haugen before sharing their own proposed rules and regulations for social media platforms — all of which would restrict the platforms’ users, rather than the companies who profit off them. Social media companies “know that they’re going to be regulated,” but it’s “not the kind of regulation that they should have,” Lemon said.
“I think there should be even more parameters on the people who use it, how people are allowed to use it,” he said. “You should be identified to the company. That doesn’t mean the company has to share your information with law enforcement unless you do something that is, you know, detrimental to your fellow citizen — a threat or something like that.”
He then contradicted himself, saying, “You should know who is responding to you and who’s putting it out there, as well.” He would like to see a platform where “everybody is registered so that they have to own it. In fact, I would like if people use their own names.”
“A social media platform where everybody who’s on it says who they are,” agreed Cuomo.
Lemon said that social media platforms should ban posters from uploading or sharing any content — including opinions — that he deems false.
“What is put on your platform at the very least should be true. Let’s start there,” Lemon said.
“What if it’s an opinion?” asked Cuomo.
“It should be true,” Lemon answered.
“An opinion?” asked Cuomo.
Lemon told him, “You can have opinions based in fact.”
Lemon’s proposals would represent a draconian crackdown on people’s ability to express themselves online. He acknowledged that some proposals may step over the “fine line” between regulation and “stopping people from saying what they want, censoring people. But I think that we are well beyond that point,” he added. “This isn’t about censorship. This is about doing what is right.”
He did not specify whom he would trust as an arbiter of truth and falsehood.
Lemon’s and Cuomo’s prescriptions for constricting online speech seemed to bear out the words of Lemon’s more successful competitor, Laura Ingraham of Fox News. Democrats’ outrage at Facebook “has nothing to do with children,” Ingraham told her audience on Tuesday night. “The Left doesn’t like Facebook, because Facebook has refused to suppress all conservative speech — that’s it. The Left has decided to drive conservatives off of the internet, and they’re afraid Facebook won’t be sufficiently loyal to their plans.”
The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.
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