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Melvin R. Welch     Leopold X. Keiser     Christopher T. Wolff    Marina Wolff
           Chairman                 Secretary                    Chief Whip                  Chancellor
Attention:  Please note the date!
April 17, 2024
Location: Burger Moe’s, St. Paul

“Opium has a harm. Opium is a poison, undermining our good customs and morality.”            — Chinese imperial edict, 1810
SOCIAL MEDIA HAS A HARM. Originating as computer programming experiments that exploded during the 2000s, the social media networks now encompass a huge percentage of all human interactions — perhaps a plurality or even a majority. Promising to connect all of us to one another, the many Facebooks and Instagrams and Youtubes and Twitters and Χitters and Snapchats of the Internet have instead driven us ever further into isolation. Everywhere we see those who spend their days and nights hunched zombie-like over their phones, ignoring their surroundings as they tap furiously at tiny screens in search of “Likes,” “Follows,” “Shares,” and, heaven forbid, “UpVotes.” Mental illness, particularly anxiety among our vulnerable youth, has skyrocketed.
Perhaps even worse, speech in the realm of social media is never free. Each platform is owned by a technology corporation, and each forces its users to comply with ever-changing rules aimed at stifling any expression that stands in opposition to the whims of Silicon Valley. The so-called “Twitter Files” even revealed direct collusion with U.S. government agencies to silence voices that the feds deemed inconvenient. That is without the national security risk posed by platforms such as TikTok that brazenly harvest user data for the People’s Republic of China. TikTok is now facing U.S. government scrutiny for this activity, but should we stop at TikTok? Should we not reconsider whether social media’s addictive nature brings harms that outweigh any benefits?
ON THE OTHER HAND, social media is, at the end of the day, communications media — and regulating it within the bounds of the First Amendment is not only difficult, but hazardous to all of our freedoms. Even if we were to only crack down now on TikTok, by far the worst of the lot, the door would be opened for the Biden administration — and any administration subsequent — to shut down potentially any social media site at will. Is it possible to safely regulate social media at all, or do we need to more diligently regulate ourselves and our loved ones, lest we become the next victims of “doom-scrolling?”
THE CHAIRMAN, anxious that he will be “ratioed” by a “cancel mob” if he makes the wrong utterance, has nonetheless called a caucus of the Society to debate the following resolution:
RESOLVED: Give me TikTok or give me Death!

The Debate will be held on Wednesday, April 17th, 2024, at Burger Moe’s, 242 West 7th Street, St. Paul, MN 55102.
The Chancellor and Chairman encourage people to arrive prior to 7 o'clock p.m. and to thank our host venue by spending money while partaking of food and drink. The debate will begin at half past seven. There is no dress code; however, gentlemen who wish to speak must wear a tie, and ladies are encouraged to adhere to a similar sartorial standard. For those gentlemen arriving sans tie yet wishing to discourse on the resolution, the Purveyor of Ties will keep on hand several remarkable selections.
Questions regarding debate caucus procedures or about the John Adams Society itself may be directed to the Chairman at (612) 741-3272 or the Secretary at (281)-229-3671.