When Censorship turns dangerous
Censorship is always a dangerous thing. It can, mentally, hinder someone's right to knowledge. But there is a clear line between limiting someone's potential intellectually and threatening their life physically. "As long as I don't write about the government, religion, politics, and other
institutions, I am free to print anything."
-- Pierre-Augustin Beaumarchais (French comedy writer)
Fortunately, extremist cenorship is relatively uncommon in most democracies. Unfortunately, it is all too common underground and in corrupt governments. Political censorship is the most practised form, when it comes to extremist censoring. This means political parties censoring their opposition's supporting newspapers, spreading their own propoganda and trying to destroy other parties' own propaganda, and even going so far as to kill supporters or leaders of a party. This is evident in the political situations of many developing coutries, but it is just as common in the Western world.
An example: The US Presidential Elections in 2000 were a victim of bad organizing and communication. Votes were not counted in many cases. This is a form of cenorship because it censors political opinions, and, because it decides the leader of an influential country, it qualifies as extreme. Another example: Singapore happens to be the site of some serious political censorship. There is a black ribbon campaign on the internet against it, and there have been a lot of protests, but the situation has not improved. "You have not converted a man because you have silenced him."
A close second to Political Extremism is Religious Extremism. The most apparent example of this is the well-known Salman Rushdie affair. Rushdie is an Indian-English writer who was publicly targeted by the Ayatollah for his writings. The Ayatollah implored "all good Muslims" to hunt and kill Rushdie. Visit our page on Rushdie(right here)
for more information.
Censorship in extremist form can turn quickly to terrorism. This should be illegal but, in many cases, is permitted because of the delicate ground surrounding Political and Religiou affairs. Bombings, shootings and fire-settings are not
legitimate ways of expressing disagreement with a peice of literature. If this is happening near you or to you, contact the police. No one-- not Christians, nor Muslims, not Republicnas, nor Democrats-- deserves to be hurt for their views. We are currently assembling links to pages about Political Censorship. You'll find our current stash below. If you find anything relevant, please, please, PLEASE email us.
Chinese Political Censorship
Poetry and Protests-- Censorship in the Ukraine
Censorship in Singapore (campaign)