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« Article removedPreviewing: Duplicity »

Our problems, and our self censorship

  • By: Qwaider

  • On:Monday, March 16, 2009 11:13:55 PM
  • In:Thoughts
  • Viewed: (4274) times

    • Currently 4.5/5 Stars.
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    Rated 4.5/5 stars (83 votes cast)

    We have a problem

    Over the past few years, many Arab bloggers have been detained, prosecuted or harassed by their own countries. Worldwide, bloggers have been fired from their positions or had charges thrown at them by the companies they work for.

    Many started to self censor their articles. Not only to make them better suited for the masses. But also for the red eyes watchful eyes of the "security" agencies around the world.

    What this clearly means is simple. We have a problem. A HUGE problem, it's bubbling underneath. Sooner or later it will explosively erupt and explode spilling out lava rivers of issues that continue to be pending resolution or even consideration.

    Self censorship isn't abstaining from using foul language or steering away from thorny issues. If I was asked to define it I would say, it's issues that people stay away from on fears of harming one's own existence, livelihood or family. Sadly, when people fear for their lives for stating their opinion (or perhaps, standing out for the truth or justice). When that happens, people usually pick the lesser of two evils and keep their mouths shut. Or, self censor!

    It's not a trivial matter...

    Thorny issues in the Arab world in general, and Jordan in particular are usually simple. Interracial marriages, Homosexual rights, and religion. Issues that take the back burner usually are Women's rights, Domestic violence, and foreigner rights. Issues that matter mostly to the public but not the states are Religion. Those that matter to the state but mostly not the public include terrorism and personal freedoms.

    But there are issues that are REAL double red tape with extra extra red eyes watching them. Issues that deal with governmental corruption, revision of the government hierarchy, and the forms of governance. As in electing heads of states, or crowning them.

    It's no secret, the rulers in their own countries are gods. Their rule is absolute, and we know what absolute power does. (And if you happen to have never read a comic book, it is absolute power corrupts absolutely). These gods/rulers have the vision, the direction, and the power to enforce it. Basically, they coerce the three branches of government (Legislative, executive, and judicial) into their absolute will. With vast control over the "fourth" branch (Media/journalism) their control becomes absolute.

    People of these countries become conditioned in a form of idol worship. Worshipping their rulers in ways that include, but are not limited to, self censorship.

    Religion, if viewed as a method of control, ultimately hopes to achieve things like "Doing good when no one is watching". This translates directly to self censorship, as in, never bad mouthing your government/ruler even when no one is listening (because normally, there's someone who's listening, paying attention, and recording everything you're staying to be used against you at some distant point in the future)

    It's not cowardice to avoid putting one's self in a losing compromising position with the "security" forces. Just like it's not cowardice to avoid dark allies at night if you're a single girl. Because, getting raped isn't really bravery. And that goes for both cases...

    So people choose to self censor...

    But the time will come, when all these bubbling issues will erupt. You can't imagine how ugly it will be then.

    Other Memories Documented on March 16
    « Article removedPreviewing: Duplicity »

    Memories....

    • #1
    • mohanned
    • Windows Internet Explorer
    • Said
    • On: 3/17/2009 1:01:34 AM
    • SpamScore=[-3.53]
    I would also add that this reflects a failure on behalf of the leadership in the respective countries. Of course this is not to say that we, as people, shouldn't bare someof the blame for the current state of affairs.

    The only way to measure success with regards to freedom of speech and freedoms in general is who much uncensored debate is going on in the society without the fear of persecution, whether that persecution is state-sponcered or even societal.
    in order for that time to come, people must, collectively, stop self censoring. you can always do it from behind a alias to avoid those preying eyes. To just sit and wait for that time is not a way to demand democracy.
    • #3
    • Qwaider
    • Windows Internet Explorer
    • Said
    • On: 3/17/2009 1:21:54 AM
    • SpamScore=[-39.39]
    Unfortunately, you can you can either have your credibility or your anonymity. You can't have both
    • #4
    • KJ
    • Windows Chrome  Browser
    • Said
    • On: 3/17/2009 9:24:22 AM
    • SpamScore=[-0.05]
    It will take a while until this "taboo" fades away as well. The advent of all these communication mediums are making it harder and harder to control what is being said. And whenever someone is detained, the world speaks up (but doesn't do much else).

    When it erupts it will be real nasty, but at the same time wonderful. Imagine logging on the net to see abundant amount of articles discussing everything and how we should all act together to push humanity forward.

    And then there will be others who would abuse this and write articles to ridicule and insult others.

    It's a toss up - especially if the article (which is most likely) is able to achieve both of the above indirectly.
    • #5
    • Ulysses
    • Windows Firefox Browser
    • Said
    • On: 3/17/2009 11:32:01 AM
    • SpamScore=[-0.18]
    Well, it's not an easy thing to do, we all still remember Hareega, and I actually do agree partially with what he did, cause even the voices that demanded him to delete the post were not government or anything, it was the blogger population it self. we have a tendency to censor and to impose censorship on views different than ours, it's almost a natural tendency in All human beings
    You too can have your Memories Documented

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