Failing the people

elizabeth

Elizabeth Casella
Managing Editor
elizabeth.casella@apps.schoolcraft.edu

Censorship in today’s society is wrong

Within the United States, people have the freedom to believe, think and say whatever they would like. Sometimes there are things that should be left unsaid, but one should have the right to say these things in whatever platform they choose. Modern day censorship of any kind is unacceptable.

In America, censorship has been around since the start of the nation. It comes in many forms and examples such as conservatives once trying to ban “Playboy Magazine,” or banning violent rap lyrics and depictions of Jesus in offensive manners. These bans have been supported in the name of tolerance, which is a way to support censorship in different terms.

Censoring books or school materials such as what kids can read can be understandable due to certain topics being hard for younger readers to understand. However, books should not be banned from libraries. Every year parents and school administrators “challenge” books that they feel should be banned in schools and libraries across the country. They do this in an attempt to keep children from coming across explicit materials or values that they disagree with. The American Library’s Association Office of Intellectual Freedom (OIF) tracks these complaints. Today, it is uncommon for books to be banned federally from schools or libraries. Parents have the right to control what their kid’s access, however institutions should not have to censor things from the public.

The first amendment of the constitution gives the right to freedom of speech. Not allowing some things to be said or published is a violation of this right. This right was given to the people to create a wealth of knowledge within a nation where citizens have the right to be free under the law. The idea of censorship not only infringes on that right, but it stops the spread of knowledge. Many people may not get proper information because they are looking at sources that are only telling half of the story. This can be translated as a way for the government to control information because it is not allowing for ideas to flow freely.

It is said that this country is a great nation because the government allows its citizens freedoms that others are denied. If censorship is accepted even to some extent is that freedom truly being granted? In a culture where information is accessible to virtually anyone with the touch of a finger on a phone or a keyboard censorship is unacceptable and intolerable.