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Ann Arbor State Senator calls Montana TikTok ban "racist", "un-American" and "gross"

Jeff Irwin
Michigan Senate Democrats
Jeff Irwin

Montana’s decision to ban the social media site TikTok from all state residents is drawing criticism from a Michigan lawmaker. He’s calling the move a “gross”, “racist”, “political act” and a violation of the First Amendment.

Ann Arbor State Senator Jeff Irwin has embraced TikTok since it took off in the U.S. In addition to press releases, Twitter and Facebook, he was excited about a new forum where he could share the latest on legislative initiatives in Michigan with a younger audience.

"I’ve gotten feedback from young people in the community who’ve said, 'Ya, I’ve seen your TikTok.'"

He remains concerned about privacy issues on all social media sites. But to ban one forum just because its owner is from China...

“Specifically, it’s using hate against Asian people for political advantage. I think it’s that gross."

And to prohibit the public in Montana from using it…

“It’s almost certainly a violation of the First Amendment.”

And measures banning business with Chinese interests he fears, will only serve to stoke more conflict between the two countries.

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Cathy Shafran was WEMU's afternoon news anchor and local host during WEMU's broadcast of NPR's All Things Considered.
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