(TotalConservative.com) -Republican Presidential Candidate Nikki Haley made a controversial suggestion recently: she believes anonymity should be abolished on the internet because she believes it poses a threat to national security.
Appearing on Fox News this week, Haley stated that if she wins the White House in 2024, one of her priorities will be to force social media platforms to publicly disclose their algorithms, and to require legal name verification for all users.
Haley called anonymity online “a national security threat,” and says eliminating this feature would get rid “of the Russian… Iranian… [and] Chinese bots.” The former South Carolina governor and UN ambassador then claimed that “when people know their name” appears with “what they say,” then the internet would contain more “civility.”
She was also interviewed by the Washington Examiner and reiterated the remarks to correspondent Byron York. During a recent podcast interview, she also mentioned the same plan to ban anonymous accounts on social media.
The suggestions are raising questions by critics about the First Amendment and free speech. Social media platforms, as private companies, have the right to allow anonymity as an option. The government is also prevented from interfering with policies on the free speech of private companies by the First Amendment. Those who disagree with Haley’s proposal have pointed out that whether or not social media tech companies require users to verify their identities is up to the company and that the government cannot force them to eliminate that option.
Two of her fellow GOP nominee competitors, newcomer Vivek Ramaswamy and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, have both pointed out that anonymous expression of free speech played a crucial role in the nation’s founding. One example is the Federalist Papers, published by James Madison, John Jay, and Alexander Hamilton under a pseudonym.
Considering that the Founding Fathers, including the authors of the Constitution itself, made use of anonymity, it should be obvious that trying to forcibly eliminate the right to hide one’s identity online is unconstitutional. Apparently, it’s not so obvious to Haley.
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