This evening Donald Trump announced to the media that he’s banning the popular app TikTok. He’s claiming that it’s due to international security concerns involving TikTok’s China-based parent company. But we all know why Trump is doing this: the “TikTok kids,” as the app’s most fervent users are known, humiliated Trump by organizing mass signups for Trump’s Tulsa rally that never materialized.
Trump has made a huge mistake here. It’s not just that it’s unclear how he even intends to try to ban the app. And when you consider today’s news that U.S. firm Microsoft is close to buying TikTok, Trump’s ability to ban the app may be going up in smoke anyway. But Trump’s real mistake here is that he’s just encouraged the TikTok kids to come after him with a vengeance.
Donald Trump may or may not be able to ban this app, but he can’t ban its users. They’ll regroup on some other app if they have to. We have no idea what they might do in retaliation. But considering they helped sabotage his Tulsa rally just because they didn’t like him, and now he’s outright gunning for them, imagine how motivated they’ll be to really humiliate him.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report