Censorship

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"Censorship, like charity, should begin at home; but unlike charity, it should end there," Clare Booth Luce once said. Censorship dates back thousands of years to the Roman Empire. Censorship is defined as the institution, system, or practice of censoring, and the definition of censoring is to examine in order to suppress or delete anything considered objectionable, according to Webster’s New World College Dictionary Fourth Edition. Censorship has developed a connotation that fluctuates from person to person; the religious right may be in complete favor of censoring whilst the left may strongly oppose it. There is also a euphemism when using the word censorship; to me censorship sounds a lot better than saying the destruction of knowledge to keep the status quo. The definition of censorship is very concrete and would be hard to argue against it, but what defines what is acceptable to censor and when? The appropriate times and topics of censorship can be difficult to define; I have thought of a way in which I feel creates a solid definition of censorship.

Censorship occurs in five major subcategories these are: moral censorship, military censorship, political censorship, religious censorship, and lastly corporate censorship.
Moral censorship appeals towards peoples morals and will mainly censor media such as Pornography, and movies that contain graphic violence or obscene language. Military censorship can be used to keep military intelligence away from the enemy or used to block the media from showing the real events that are unfolding in times of war. Political censorship can be defined as when the government holds back confidential information from its citizens. Religious censorship is the removing of material that does not agree to the same ideologies of a person’s faith. Corporate censorship is the stopping of certain pieces of work being published that could potentially do any form of damage to their corporation. Each one of these categories occurs countless each and every day and is likely to stay that way for a very long time.
Like everything in this world censorship has its pros and it has its cons. There are things which should be censored, like battle plans during a war. Having battle plans accessible to anyone could destroy an army and lose a war. On the other hand there is censoring the text books which educate the young about these battles. The victors of a war write the text books, not the losers and there are actions that take place which one may not be proud of to win a war and may not wish to include. Censoring of text books also depends on the target audience; a more mature audience will receive less censored information than that of a less mature audience.
The media today is getting censored more than ever; with reporters not being able to report there own versions of stories. A lot of the stories today being censored are because they somehow tie into a corporation or within the government. Corporations use their power and their lawyers to scare news broadcasting companies into not reporting the story or censoring it. Much information revolving around politics never even makes it into the news until the topic of the information is no longer as important.

Censorship can be an effective tool throughout life but it needs to be used the correct way in order for that to happen. Too much information is being censored now making it hard to see which sources are credible and which ones are not. A perfect balance between censored material and uncensored material will be near impossible to achieve because everyone wants something else. The negative connotation which censorship has earned is the opposite of what censorship was intended to be. People need to be aware of the events taking place around them and question the validity of what they are told and hear or read in the media.

Censorship can be an effective tool throughout life but it needs to be used the correct way in order for that to happen. Too much information is being censored now making it hard to see which sources are credible and which ones are not credible. A perfect balance between censored material and uncensored material will be near impossible to achieve. The negative connotation (in my eyes) of censorship is the opposite of what censorship was intended to be. Censorship greatly affects people’s lives each and every day without them even knowing about it. Censorship greatly affects the way people live their life each and everyday without them even knowing.





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