On Dec. 17, Hollywood star Rosanna Arquette lashed out on Twitter, accusing the owner of TikTok of allowing imminent threats of “mass potential gun violence” in public schools to happen without intervening or alarming authorities.
“So a Chinese company Douyin owns TikTok. And they apparently are allowing mass potential Gun violence on their Platform. To shoot kids at school, kids killing kids . The HORROR,” the 62-year-old star, known for her roles in Desperately Seeking Susan and Pulp Fiction, wrote. “Shut it down until it’s taken off for good,” she added.
White males only
Douyin is the brand name of TikTok in China, while TikTok’s parent company is ByteDance. Arquette, who is known for venting her liberal political stances, is also a staunch gun reform proponent and an anti-racist champion who once said on Twitter that “All of the [mass] shooters in America have been White males. White terrorists.”
White males or not, TikTok posted a response to Twitter addressing the rumors of an impending high-school mass shooting anywhere in America that read:
“We handle even rumored threats with utmost seriousness, which is why we’re working with law enforcement to look into warnings about potential violence at schools even though we have not found evidence of such threats originating or spreading via TikTok.”
School districts closed over TikTok threat
Several districts around the country including California, Texas, Minnesota, and Missouri decided to preemptively cancel classes on Friday, Dec. 17, the rumored designated day of shooting.
Even though several law-enforcement agencies followed leads indicating that on that day, several shootings were planned, they could not trace them back to any particular individual or group of persons that could cause a real or imminent threat.
One such district that closed its doors on Friday was that of Little Falls in Minnesota after the district was identified as a possible target.
“Based on law enforcement interviews, Little Falls Community Schools was specifically identified in a TikTok post related to this threat,” superintendent Stephen Jones wrote in an announcement to parents and staff.
“In conversations with local law enforcement, the origins of this threat remain unknown. Therefore, school throughout the district is canceled tomorrow, Friday, December 17. All home events and activities are canceled or postponed both tonight and tomorrow.” it said.
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy also made attempts on Twitter to address concerns over mass shootings.
“While there are no known specific threats against New Jersey schools, the safety of our children is our highest priority and we will work closely with law enforcement to monitor the situation and remain prepared,” the governor said.