After an Air Force vet posted her story on social media about rising from poverty and graduating with four degrees, her account was disabled, saying she made it happen on her own and wasn't responsible for anyone else's student debt.
Fox News spokesperson Gretchen Smith stated, "It is hard work, but you can do it." "You can manage your money no matter how small. You can pay off your debt, and you can learn lessons from it."
She founded Code of Vets, a not-for-profit organization in memory of her father who passed away at 57 after long battles with post-traumatic stress disorder. It uses social media to help veterans in crisis.
Following president Biden's extension of the student loan payment pause to August 31, a debate erupted on whether student loan debt should be forgiven. "It doesn't matter where you come from," Smith told Americans in a recent interview, and eliminating student loans won't help students.
Student debt shouldn't be wiped out, says Smith. I don't think they'll get anything out of this. It's actually going to hurt them."
She noted that if you work hard, are consistent and persistent, you can achieve your goals.
Smith posted about student loan forgiveness across her social media on Thursday, including on her Code of Vets page. It was later removed from LinkedIn, and her account at Code of Vets was restricted. In a tweet, Smith shared a screenshot of LinkedIn telling her the Code of Vets post violated their hate speech policy.
As of the time of publication, LinkedIn had not responded to Fox News' request for comment.
In response, Smith asked, "What did I do wrong?". "I told my story. That's how I grew up. That's how I believe everyone has to handle their own bills and payments on their own, and I was punished for it, and I just think it's a shame that Big Tech holds such power."
The LinkedIn Help account on Twitter replied to her complaint saying "we acknowledge that sometimes we get it wrong", offering the option to appeal if felt the removal was in error.
"I do not see Democrats being censored; I see conservatives," Smith told Fox News. Right now, they've got complete control over all of our speech on these platforms, which I find terrifying."
Smith told Fox News that she didn't grow up with any money and government should not just hand it out.
Smith says that when you're handed something, you don't take care of it, you don't nurture it, you don't appreciate it as much.
During Smith's childhood, she recalls her family "living out of a garden" and purchasing clothes at yard sales.
After high school, Smith followed her father and brother's example and enlisted in the military. With her G.I. bill and her husband's income, they were able to pay for their college education while still being frugal.
Those who advocate for student loan forgiveness have stated that young people shouldn't have to start out in debt to acquire an education. Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) previously told Fox Digital that student debt could prevent Americans from having a family and buying a home.
As for the institutions, Smith said, they need to be held responsible as well. "They charge exorbitant prices, or they get themselves into so much debt. In what manner do they get out of this?"
In our country, our freedom of expression is being restricted in a manner that is extremely distressing. The tech giants have basically taken over freedom of speech and are deciding what's cool and what's not cool. That's anti-American, Smith continued, adding that's the reason she volunteered for the armed forces.
Smith explained, "I think each and every one of us is responsible for developing our own lives and the American dream is out there. We have to have the willpower so that we can go find it and make it our own."