Note: This article may contain commentary reflecting the author's opinion.

During the State of the Union, President Joe Biden took a few moments to address concerns over social media and hit some notable applause points, but left out one key issue: free speech.

After discussing mental health, particularly that of children who are most susceptible to the deleterious effects of social media, he said:

“We must finally hold social media companies accountable for the experiment they are running on our children for profit.

And it’s time to pass bipartisan legislation to stop Big Tech from collecting personal data on kids and teenagers online, ban targeted advertising to children, and impose stricter limits on the personal data these companies collect on all of us.”

Amazingly, he mentioned neither China nor TikTok in spite of serious concerns over Beijing’s control over one of the most harmful platforms to children’s mental health.

But most conspicuously absent from his speech was even a single reference to “free speech,” “freedom of speech” or “censorship” throughout his entire address to the American people.

This is in stark contrast to a Pew Research Center Survey that showed a majority of U.S. adults aged 18-49 and 62% of Republicans have said that people being able to speak their minds freely is more important than being able to ‘feel welcome and safe’ online.

Our founding fathers felt that the right to free speech was so critical as to enshrine it within the first of the ten amendments of the Bill of Rights. President Joseph R. Biden, knowing this well, couldn’t find the time in an hour to mention it even once.

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Conversely, former President Donald Trump’s remarks in this area were clear in his commentary, ‘State of the Union 2023: A Nation in Decline.’

Trump wrote,

“Never in American history has our right to free speech been under assault and threatened to this magnitude.”

He also called for the passage of a Digital Bill of Rights and for the investigation of the Biden administration for engaging in collusion and censorship with social media companies.


In Trump’s State of the Union response, he told the American people, “Joe Biden’s weaponized Justice Department, and I’m a victim of it, is persecuting his political opponents. His administration is waging war on free speech. They’re trying to indoctrinate and mutilate our children. He’s leading us to the brink of World War III. And on top of all of that, he’s the most corrupt president in American history, and it’s not even close.”

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