Leader Rodgers in Fox News: E&C Republicans Will Prioritize Parents Next Congress
Big Tech refuses to be transparent about how their platforms are putting our children’s lives and mental health at risk. They aren’t doing enough to stop the illegal sale of fentanyl on their platforms. They refuse to acknowledge the dangerous algorithms that direct and amplify harmful content to kids and teens — especially teen girls. They refuse to end the exploitative practices that take advantage of children and teens for profit.
Parents have called on Congress to act. House Energy and Commerce Committee Republicans will be ready next year with real, workable solutions to enable parents to take on Big Tech companies that are harming their kids.
In a recent Fox News profile, Energy and Commerce Committee Republican Leader Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) laid out the E&C Republican agenda to remove liability protections from Big Tech companies that knowingly promote, solicit, or facilitate illegal activity, including the sale of illegal drugs, and equip parents with the tools they need to ensure their kids are safe online.
Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, the incoming chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, told Fox News Digital that the nation’s biggest technology companies are in for a rude awakening when the GOP-led Congress takes office in January.
BIG TECH MUST DO MORE TO CRACK DOWN ON ILLEGAL DRUGS
“I have heard too many stories, personal stories of parents who have tragically lost their children to fentanyl because of drugs purchased online,” said McMorris Rodgers. “I believe that Big Tech needs to be doing more to crack down on this illegal activity and prevent criminals from exploiting these platforms.”
The Washington Republican said her committee would hold oversight hearings into how drug traffickers and dealers have subverted social media sites like Instagram, TikTok and Snapchat to sell illicit substances. McMorris Rodgers said those hearings would look into drug dealers and how Big Tech is not doing enough to stop them.
BIDEN NEEDS TO ENFORCE THE LAW
McMorris Rodgers said that while the Communications Decency Act of 1996 already requires technology companies to moderate content that is illegal, such as the sale of certain drugs, the federal government is not enforcing the law.
“They are not being held accountable for these harms,” said the congresswoman. “We need to hold Big Tech accountable, hold the Biden administration accountable.”
CHILDREN SUFFER MOST FROM BIG TECH HARMS
Republicans on the Energy and Commerce Committee are also planning to probe whether Big Tech companies have downplayed or hid studies showing that social media platforms have a negative impact on children.
Big Tech CEOs “have testified before the Energy and Commerce [Committee] in the past, but [we believe] they have not been transparent about the impact their platforms have on our children,” said McMorris Rodgers.
The congresswoman said she hopes that further transparency will help parents ensure their children are safe online.
“It’s just not a fair fight right now,” said McMorris Rodgers. “We need to make sure parents have the tools necessary to monitor their kids’ use of social media, so they can put time limits on usage and be notified if their kids might be involved in suspicious activity.”