Featured Image
New York Governor Kathy HochulPhoto by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

(LifeSiteNews) — New York Gov. Kathy Hochul used a gun control bill signing ceremony to boast of her administration’s plans to monitor social media for “violent extremism.”

She signed the legislation ostensibly to prevent another mass shooting like that in Buffalo, where a white individual began to livestream on Twitch his killing of 10 black citizens on May 14.

The Democrat signed a series of gun control bills on Monday, including a prohibition on the sale of some guns to individuals under 21 years of age. “Gun violence is an epidemic that is tearing our country apart. Thoughts and prayers won’t fix this, but taking strong action will,” she said.

During the press conference, she shared what she said is a related effort.

“We’re now requiring social media networks to monitor and report hateful conduct on their platforms,” Hochul said at the Monday bill signing. She said there would be a new task force led by the state’s attorney general to more closely surveil social media users.

“We’re going to continue focusing on this we’re going to establish a task force on social media and violent extremism to investigate the role of social media in promoting domestic terror,” she said. “Our great leader, our attorney general will be championing this cause with every power her office can bring it at their disposal.”

Hochul signed legislation on June 6 to establish the task force.

The initiative will “study, investigate, and make recommendations relating to the use, operations, policies, programs, and practices of online social media companies and any role they may have in promoting, facilitating, and providing platforms for individuals and groups to plan and promote acts of violence,” the legislation states.

This includes “the use of such platforms to: initiate threats against public safety or against a specific group of individuals based on an actual or perceived classification or characteristic; communicate or plan for criminal activity,” such as “hate crimes, acts of domestic terrorism, or acts of domestic terrorism motivated by hate; spread extremist content; and aid in the radicalization and mobilization of extremist individuals or groups.”

The legislation does not define “violent extremism.” Federal national security officials have previously referred to pro-life activism as a form of “right-wing extremism” and others have labeled Christian views as a form of extremism.

Hochul previously referred to social media, which she claimed radicalized the Buffalo shooter, to a virus.

“How these depraved ideas are fermenting on social media – it’s spreading like a virus now,” Hochul said in May, shortly after the shooting.