I'm not usually political on this journal. It's not that kind of journal, I know. However, there comes a time when a person must speak out against the injustices of the world. Because to not speak out is to be culpable to the actions of those who would repress liberties. Because to say quiet is to allow Gestapo tactics to hide in the sheep skin of benevolence, while cutting the throat of civil liberties.
What I'm talking about is the right to say what you want to say. We who are here on the various jounal websites online practice this every single time we log on and start typing our thoughts, our feelings, our experiences, onto our electronic journals. However, the current administration, the religious right, and conversatives, is seeking to take that right from you. Take it away by slowly taking bits and pieces of the freedom of speech, until one day that freedom is no more. The House of Representives passed a bill allowing the further policing of the nation's broadcast airways. All because Janet Jackson flashed her breast on TV. The House Bill calls for larger fines on what they deem to be indecent, obscene, or profane. But, it in no way tries to define what will be called indecent, obscene, or profane. The problem lies in the fact that these words are highly subjective.
Case in point, last week someone came onto this journal and read one of my entries. She did not like what I had to say, and voiced her opinion on my guestbook. Right away several people defended my right to say whatever I want to say. The point I'm making is that one person found my words to be obscene. She didn't use that word, but after reading her guestbook entry it's not a big stretch to say she found my entry to be obscene. Nevertheless, I have the absolute right to write what I wish to write on this journal. However, the actions by the President, and Congress, shows me that there might come a day in which I won't have the right to express myself freely.
Some might think that it's a bit of a slippery slope to say that upping the fines for saying "indecent, obscene or profane" speech on broadcast TV and radio will bring an end to the first amendment. However, that's exactly what will happen. Today it's the radio and TV, tomorrow it's books, and the day after that it's your thoughts. Because that is the way it's happened throughout history. Repressive governments have always seeked to erode the right to express oneself. Because that brings around free thinking, and not conformity. And History has taught us that art, in its many forms, is also one of the first targets towards repression. In Nazi Germany there was a move to get rid of the intellectuals. Again, because thought brings expression, and expression brings thinking. The Nazis deemed certain art as Degenerative Art (Entartete Kunst), and classified it as such in order to destroy it. Because the art was thought to be anti-German, or jewish, or just plain degenerative to "correct" National Socialist virtues. The art included works by artists such as Max Beckmann, Vassili Kandinsky, and Emil Nolde.
Today the actions of our government have started down the same path that the Nazis took in order to silence the majority of the people when they rose to power. Like the Nazis before, the current move to censor certain content on the radio and TV is but the first step towards the eradication of the personal liberties spelled out in the Bill of Rights. Because the Right Wing/Religious Right agenda wishes to suspend these rights for the majority of the people, and let only those who agree with them practice them to their full extent.
Now, your asking yourself, "What can I do?" There are several things you can do. First, inform yourself. Don't just watch Fox news, or CNN. They hand you the news in a neat little package, easy for consumption, but light on actual content. I suggest alternative news sources, those not owned by the media giants. Second, be heard. I wrote my Senators, and will write my congressman, to tell them to fight for MY rights. But even that's not enough, get online and post something. An opinion on how Bush's policies have affected you. Many of you haven't filled your tax return yet. See how much less you'll be getting back this year. When you do, take note that the richest 5% of American's received half the tax cut Bush promised us all. Write in your journals! Third, vote. If your not registered to vote, do so now. It's not that hard. There are people in the world that have never, EVER, had the opportunity to vote in an election. Don't take that right for granted. Because when a politician sees that you don't take your vote seriously, they start to believe that you don't count. They start to believe that you will fall into line with anything they feed you. Why? Because you don't speak up. This is going to take a lot of work people. There is a faction in this country that wish to take this great democracy and turn it into a theocracy. Don't let history repeat itself. Don't let this country turn into a Nazi Germany, or a Communist Russia, or Taliban Afghanistan.