Often recently, Republicans have tried to essentially blame President Joe Biden and his team for the deadly spread of the drug fentanyl across the United States. Far-right rhetoric has included the false notion that the president has essentially abandoned the southern border to a so-called invasion that is directly leading to Americans dying — and that’s just not an accurate retelling of events.
In one example of the inaccuracy, the leader of the federal Drug Enforcement Administration explained during an appearance on television over the weekend how social media companies are actually a key player in the fight. In short, unequal enforcement of the platforms’ own rules against something like selling illegal drugs can substantially help such operations, putting lives at risk — and the Biden administration is imposing pressure to comply.
“We’ve been in conversations with the social media companies,” Anne Milgram told NBC. “The Deputy Attorney General convened all of us in April of this year and made it very clear, number one, that the companies have to comply with their own terms of service, which say, ‘This is illegal. You cannot be selling fake pills. You cannot be selling drugs on social media websites.’ Number two, law enforcement needs to get information from the social media companies. We have not, until recently, gotten nearly as much cooperation as we need.” She also referenced the overall urgency of the situation as Americans continue to die from these drugs. She has previously spoken to this same sort of issue in contexts including a hearing of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Her newer comments were spotlighted by The Hill. On a similar note, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas has also spoken in Congressional testimony about the need to address the demand for these drugs while implementing plans to stop distribution. Republicans, though, sometimes evidently prefer absurd “solutions” like suggesting military action that effectively targets Mexican soil. And the southern border situation has driven multiple recent attempts to impeach the president and top officials in his administration.