Shut down Facebook for public health reasons?

Facebook has been in the news lately due to testimony at the Senate by Frances Haugen (imagine how much better off the company would be if they’d never hired him/her/zir/them!). From “Here are 4 key points from the Facebook whistleblower’s testimony on Capitol Hill” (NPR):

Haugen has leaked one Facebook study that found that 13.5% of U.K. teen girls in one survey say their suicidal thoughts became more frequent after starting on Instagram.

Another leaked study found 17% of teen girls say their eating disorders got worse after using Instagram.

About 32% of teen girls said that when they felt bad about their bodies, Instagram made them feel worse, Facebook’s researchers found, which was first reported by the Journal.

From Harvard’s McLean Hospital, “The Social Dilemma: Social Media and Your Mental Health”:

The platforms are designed to be addictive and are associated with anxiety, depression, and even physical ailments.

A 2018 British study tied social media use to decreased, disrupted, and delayed sleep, which is associated with depression, memory loss, and poor academic performance. Social media use can affect users’ physical health even more directly. Researchers know the connection between the mind and the gut can turn anxiety and depression into nausea, headaches, muscle tension, and tremors.

We’ve been willing to suspend or eliminate what had been considered fundamental and/or Constitutionally guaranteed rights in hopes of reducing the death rate tagged to COVID-19. Children couldn’t go to school for a year in American cities; adults couldn’t gather despite a First Amendment purportedly preventing the government from restricting their right to assemble. The potential loss of life-years from social-media-induced teen suicide is larger than whatever we might have saved via coronashutdowns (even if we assume that lockdowns and masks had some effect, COVID-19 was killing people at a median age of 82).

Why not declare that social media represents a public health emergency (Harvard re: racism as a public health crisis) and make Facebook, Instagram, et al. illegal in the U.S.? (order that ISPs block access to their IP addresses, accept a bit of leakage from Americans getting in via VPNs from the Free States of Russia, Scandinavia, etc., maybe require some FATCA-style rules so that companies are required to screen out American citizens regardless of VPN use)

Recent envy-provoking posts from Facebook friends… let’s call this one “I went to the Rolling Stones with friends while you were bored at home.”

Numerous “My kids are smiling, healthy, and happy, while yours are bratty, congested, and sulking” (variation: “My kid got into the elite college from which your kid was recently rejected”) and “I am on vacation somewhere beautiful while you are stuck at work wearing a mask 8 hours/day.”


14 thoughts on “Shut down Facebook for public health reasons?

  1. Very progressive mental addiction from Facebook – aren’t “progressives” and democrats love drugs?

  2. Seeing all our classmates appearing to be infinitely well off by age 30 was definitely a new experience we didn’t have before 2008. Before then, it was just celebrities who hit paydirt by age 30. Now that our classmates are all fighting divorce battles & health problems, viewing the relentless rise of the santa clause rally while wishing we bought TSLA is the new anguish.

    Maybe the government will have to ban access to stonk prices in addition to the book, even though the only real cure is legalizing prostitution. Only righteous christian cures are allowed in the socialist utopia.

  3. I bet more than 13.5% of teenage girls have suicidal thoughts after looking in the mirror — so while we are at it we should ban mirrors.

    • I’m sure something like 13.5% of teenage girls in the 1970s had suicidal thoughts after looking at Seventeen Magazine, with its endless diet tips, and Twiggy-like models in the clothing & make-up ads. That’s my problem with the government’s case — telling teenage girls that their bodies aren’t acceptable unless they’re willowy & near-emaciated has been a thing ever since Susan Dey was on the Partridge Family. Actress Dey tells us she engaged in bulimia to stay at an acceptable camera-ready weight. When the Harvey Weinstein story broke, many of his victims mentioned that the female producers were telling them to lose weight far more than the male ones. It’s an endless cycle of feeling unacceptable if you’re a female in the 21st century! Agree with Alex (below) that gay men also have a fixation with lithe physiques — the older, wealthy gay men always prefer a young boy toy who has Timothy Chalamet ectomorphic build. Not sure how they pull it off, cuz there is food & libations beginning with Happy Hour daily.

    • But teenager magazines did not lie and did not rigged US elections. Unlike Facebook CEO. So I will save my rateous indignation with crooked attacks to defend a more worthy entity. I do not think there is ever enough atonement for Mr Z. misdeeds.

  4. We shouldn’t ban anything on social media or Facebook, because they PROVE what my -ex girlfriend believed about society: that it was causing her to have body image dysmorphia including but not limited to her anorexia, bulimia and her addiction to laxatives. When I first met her she was a Size 0 and her clothes were falling off her at Size 0. I think at the end she may have been a Size 1, but she resisted that too and tried to starve herself.

    She was absolutely obsessed and totally convinced that all of society’s images and “standards” we causing her not to be able to put food in her own mouth and feel comfortable in her own skin. At least an hour – and sometimes a lot more – every single day were spent with her decompressing, ranting and raving, and crying and wailing about “Society’s Images” and the crushing effects on her soul that led her to induce vomiting, contributed to her irritable bowel syndrome, compelled her to become a vegetarian, and made it impossible for her to even consider becoming pregnant and bearing children. The latter because it was biologically dangerous for her to do so, but because she would do nothing but think of suicide if she became “fat” from pregnancy, and she could never possibly bring herself to ingest enough food to support a pregnancy! She was repulsed by the idea that her breasts would swell and begin to emit milk, she believed breastfeeding was a cruel and unjust legacy of the patriarchy imposing sex roles on women, and violently rejected the idea that any or all of the above were caused by her own obsession with proving all of the above to herself. Actually, now that I think about it, there wasn’t anything in her life that wasn’t a cruel and unjust legacy of the Patriarchy, from high heels (which she loved) to jewelry to standardized tests and academic research (which she sucked at and hated.) And let’s not get started about how evil the “medical model” of the brain was. She didn’t know any #Science and didn’t want to! It was Patriarchy!

    We used to visit the supermarket. I would take her there because when I would stay at her apartment, her refrigerator usually contained some ice, maybe some diet soda, and a half a container of low-fat cottage cheese. There was never anything to snack on, not even pickels!
    Of course, she was supermarket-phobic in the extreme, a million evil packages were gazing upon her, trying to make her feel more comfortable in her body! I would walk with her in the supermarket and encourage her to eat more healthy food. Of course, it was important that she made me know it was just impossible for her, and it made her anxiety level spike, so I was hurting her! We would leave with six boxes of rice cakes, some diet soda, some more cottage cheese, and a few other items with zero calories, or as close to it as possible.

    I was therefore responsible for ordering dinner every night or taking her out to nice vegetarian restaurants so that she could survive! I spent a lot of money doing that, I don’t know how many thousands of dollars!

    In my view, nothing is wrong! Facebook has become the de-facto proof that everything she said was true! She should be glad to see it. Facebook has become the feed team for clinical psychologists who specialize in eating disorders! Why would anyone want to put a stop to that?

    • “…make her feel more UNcomfortable in her body…” Sorry there are a couple of typos in there.

      But listen, Facebook and Instagram are, from an intellectual point of view, everything she DREAMED of. They’re proof positive that Society Run By Men Kills Women. That’s why it all has to be overthrown, and everyone needs Paganism run by Wymyn! To stop all the senseless Patriarchy.

      Zuckerberg and Facebook, Instagram, et., al., have delivered to people like her EXACTLY what they wanted to prove. They were taught that in theory at State Universities by feminist professors during the 1990s but all the technology just wasn’t in place yet! Now it’s an incontrovertible truth!

    • Sometimes I’d get a little cross with her and say: “You know, did you ever consider the fact that most fashion magazines, fashion brands and media are controlled by gay men who WANT female supermodels to look like skeletonized young bois that they’d like to fuck?”

      She would get angry at that and launch a diatribe about how that made me a homophobe *and* a misogynist, because I didn’t understand that it was all about the White Male Capitalist profit motive that drove them to victimize themselves.

    • Dollars to donuts your ex-girlfriend had daddy issues or came from a family with divorced parents.

    • @G. Ranma:

      Correct on both counts, and acutely so. She hated her father and her mother was a fake-boob gold digger. Her father was actually not a bad man: I met him (once!) He was a farmer, and quite conservative, and she talked about a lot of stories she had regarding him, which in hindsight I think we’re probably 99% pure fabrication. He paid for her college, at least one or two years, as I remember, but he had thought she would be better off pursuing a career in healthcare as a nurse. She hated him for that. Nurses were a Job of the Patriarchy for Women.

      And her mother – whew. Tough to describe in a small space without sounding lurid, but looking back on it now she was a very selfish person. They were from a semi-rural area of Maryland, and in the beginning of our relationship, I thought it was a very “male feminist” thing for me to do to help her out because I was ‘priveleged’. She was the first person in her family to attend college, and I thought I was doing my best to help her have upward mobility on her own terms and separate herself from the troubles of her childhood. At least, that was the initial impetus.

      I don’t think any of members of her family had more than a high school education. Well, she’s a “doctor” now.

    • @Sam: We didn’t sleep together for more than a year after we met. She wasn’t bad in bed, but she also wasn’t what I would call “great.” I’ve had better. She was actually pretty selfish as a lover. I was idealistic and very foolish. I thought my efforts would be reciprocated. They weren’t. I also thought she had been sexually traumatized by an abortion that left her internally scarred.

      I finally pulled the plug when I discovered that was a lie. She had used it at the beginning of our relationship to extort money from her ex-boyfriend, who cheated on her. Well, she couldn’t have the phone calls in her apartment without continuing the lie with me, and it became part of her official narrative with me also, embellished a little bit.

      She never had an abortion, she had never been pregnant. But she used that as a manipulation tool very skillfully. What was I supposed to do? Demand to see her medical records? Of course, I *BELIEVED HER*.

      I pulled the plug on the relationship the day I found out. We were visiting a lifelong friend of hers who had recently moved to Illinois with her new husband. They had a housewarming party and invited us to have dinner with them. We traveled to the house and when we got there, they were missing a few items needed to finish preparing dinner. So it was decided that my -ex and this woman’s new husband should go to the store and pick them up, to get know each other. In the meantime I sat in the kitchen chopping vegetables with her pal. We had a couple of glasses of wine, and the subject turned to previous relationships. I said: “Yeah, I’m still furious about what [name] did to her with the abortion she had.”

      Her friend was a little drunk and said: “What abortion?”

      And INSTANTLY she knew that she had just dropped the atomic bomb. Her mouth hung open and she turned pale.

      I paused for few seconds as my vision spun. I looked at her and said: “I have to leave. You will have to bring her home. It was nice to meet you. This will be the last time we see each other. Goodbye.”

    • By the way, I gently placed the big sharp knife I was holding to slice cucumbers into the sink, turned and walked straight out the back door and got in my car. I don’t even remember the drive home, I don’t know how I got back. I don’t remember much of the following several days, either.

  5. We have nothing but intensely selfish, self-centered victimhood-culture people running this country, and they’re very, very, badly fucked up – but they’ve been taught and certified by academics that they’re correct. They are dedicated to producing more of their own kind.

    It isn’t going to end well. There is no end to the grievance trail. Every new grievance is the inspiration for more grievance – they never learn and they’re never satisfied – and there is absolutely no limit to what they want to take or destroy. And they have absolutely ZERO sense of humor and absolutely ZERO remorse.

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