Senators are working to control the results of Google’s abortion search

Democrats are asking Google to “limit the appearance” of the results of abortion clinics. It would be good for people searching for abortion information on Google to be presented with the most relevant and scientifically rigorous information, just as it would be good for Google’s results not to tell someone with leg cramps that they may die from some rare disease. But for that to happen, technology company employees need to be both perfect arbiters of the truth and able to personally check piles and piles of websites. Since this is not possible, we are content with a system in which Google provides a set of web links and allows people to take from this content whatever they want.

This upsets some politicians who believe that Google should only provide government-approved information. IN last iteration of this phenomenon have 21 senators send a letter to Google CEO Sundar Pichai, who complains that people seeking abortion information can be taken to crisis centers for pregnancy.

Crisis centers for pregnancy exist for persuade people not to choose abortion. They can be run by religious organizations or secular pro-life groups. They often attract people by pretending to be neutral sources of information and support for people facing an unexpected pregnancy, but their purpose is to persuade people to continue that pregnancy. Sometimes this is done through positive means, such as emotional support and material help, and sometimes it is done through negative means, such as guilt and misleading information.

From the point of view of choice, there is much to criticize about crisis pregnancy centers. But while it has been found that some misrepresent themselves in ways that constitute fraud, most operate within legal limits and have every right to exist, to advertise and to try to persuade people. In other words, they could even be hailed as a non-authoritarian way of promoting lifelong views – in contrast to the much more drastic tactics of trying to close abortion clinics, banning access to abortion pills and criminalizing abortion doctors.

In any case, in a free society, they must be able to advertise wherever choice advertising is permitted.

If Google decide to ban ads for crisis pregnancy centers would be one thing. I don’t think that would be a good idea, because I think we benefit when technology companies try to stay relatively apolitical. But as a private company, Google is completely free to make that choice.

But whatever choice he makes, he must free it from political pressure.

In their letter to Google, senators – including Diane Feinstein (D – California), Bernie Sanders (I – Vt.), Elizabeth Warren (D – Massachusetts) and Amy Klobuchar (D – Min.) – give the impression that all crisis pregnancy centers falsely present as abortion clinics. “We are writing today about alarming new reports that Google is directing users seeking abortion services to ‘fake abortion clinics’, also known as ‘crisis pregnancy centers’ or ‘pregnancy resource centers’, they said.

They call on Google to limit the occurrence of fake abortion clinics or so-called “crisis pregnancy centers” in Google search results, Google Ads and Google Maps when users search for an “abortion clinic”, a “pill for abortion” abortion, ”or similar terms.“ They want Google to attach disclaimers to crisis pregnancy center websites that appear in search results.

But it is incorrect to assume everything Crisis centers for pregnancy are disguised as abortion clinics. And those who field doing so in a way that is against the law should be considered by the legal system, not by federal lawmakers who exert censorship pressure on a private company.

The latter approach not only undermines freedom of speech and free markets; this is remarkably short-sighted as a political strategy. If senators pressure private companies to shut down speech that Democrats don’t like while Democrats are in power, what do they think will happen when Republicans take the lead again?

The best way to counter bad information is to get good information to people, not to get private participants to spread only your favorite messages. The government, which is powerful enough to harass technology companies with concealing information about abortion centers, is also powerful enough to harass technology companies to hide information about how to have an abortion – and much more.


FOLLOW-UP

Uvalde cops did not check that the door was locked. News of the stunning incompetence of the police in Uwalde, Texas, continues to come. “As police waited for more than an hour in the hallway corridor, where a gunman killed 19 students and two teachers, none of the officers checked to see if the classroom doors were locked. ” reports ABC:

The new development of the shooting investigation came just days after Pete Aredondo, chief of the Uwalde Consolidated Independent School District Police, commander of the May 24 mass shooting incident at Rob Elementary School, defended his actions and said he was late in breaking links. classrooms 111 and 112, where the shooter was hiding because he was waiting for a porter to take the key from the door.

But surveillance records show that neither Aredondo nor the other officers hiding in the corridor outside the classrooms ever tried to open the door before receiving the keys to the two connecting classrooms. That means there are 77 minutes between when the alleged 18-year-old gunman entered the school through an unlocked door and when police fatally shot him, a source familiar with the investigation told ABC News.

See also:

• “Uwalde hired a law firm to block the release of public recordings of school shootings

• “Police militarization gave us Uwalde


FREE MIND

Republicans in Texas are moving to the right. The new platform of the Republican Party of Texas, voted last weekend, includes a resolution declaring the election of Joe Biden illegitimate and is expected to include a plan declaring homosexuality or “abnormal lifestyle choices.” Biden’s resolution was “approved by a vote of the delegates”, reports New York Times:

Statements on homosexuality – as well as additional positions on abortion calling on students to “learn about the humanity of the unborn child” – were among more than 270 boards approved by a platform committee and voted on by a larger group of delegates using paper ballots . The results of these votes were still pending on Sunday, but Mr. Vesolek said it is rare for a plank to be rejected by the entire convention after it has been approved by the commission.


FREE MARKETS

Telehealth in danger. Near the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, states began lifting restrictions on remote doctor visits and prescribing. Here, things are going well, which has led many to predict that loose telehealth standards – enjoyed by both suppliers and consumers – are here to stay. But the states have begun to repeal remote health care deregulation, blaming some of the outdated licensing standards:

The abolition of access to telehealth services has been gradual and quiet over the past few months as pandemic-era emergency medical orders fall into disrepair, re-imposing some of the old rules on when doctors can practice in many countries.

At Johns Hopkins Medicine, some patients and their families now have to change doctors or drive hours to different states, where previously video calls from their homes would be allowed under more liberal regulations, he said. Brian Hasselfeld, Medical Director of the Digital Health and Telemedicine Health System.

The main barrier is licensing: a 19th-century requirement that a doctor must be licensed by the state in which the patient is located, even if the doctor is licensed elsewhere.

“Most states are now returning to licensing rules before the pandemic, where you have to have a license in our state if you want to see patients in our state,” Hasselfeld said.

Moree TIMES.

Mind Foundation. report published earlier this year looks at what states need to do to protect access to telemedicine. “States must act now to ensure that their country’s physical and economic needs are met with a better and more future-oriented health system.” suggests Vittorio Nastasi, Director of Reason for Criminal Justice Policy.


QUICK FOLLOW-UP

• “According to leaked audio from more than 80 internal TikTok meetings, China-based ByteDance employees have repeatedly had access to non-public data about TikTok users in the United States,” reports Buzzfeed.

• A two-party technology antitrust bill could be passed soon. “It’s still a bad idea,” write The reasonis Joe Lancaster.

• Justin Amash shares his vision for the Libertarian Party.

• A eavesdropping history.

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