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AMENDMENT NUMBER 1

When my parents prevent me from watching, reading or listening to certain things, it really gets on my nerves. I feel as if I am being deprived of my basic right to know the truth, or to see reality as it is. It annoys me even more when some authority deprives me, and many like me, of this basic right (to know truth/see reality as it is).

When the framers of the constitution sat down and wrote the constitution of the United States of America, they all agreed on the concept of free speech, and protected the right of citizens to freely express their opinions through the press or similar means. So important was this concept, that it is forever a part of the first amendment which declares: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances”.

The concept of free speech intertwines with the concept of censoring information. Censorship is the act of editing out, or restricting certain information in order to keep it from the public. Censoring is directly preventing citizens from expressing their full opinion. It is not enough that the censored material has contradicted an action taken by the authority, or that it could possibly damage the authority’s status.

A student is also a citizen who has basic rights that should be respected. Students should have the full rights to express their opinions to other students – whether in speech or in writing (as in a newspaper). And the students reading these newspapers should feel comfortable knowing that they are receiving reliable information that is not censored.

Censoring information has other negative outcomes, particularly the reader’s loss of trust in the material and its censor. All these negative outcomes go against the first amendment in every aspect. They are limiting both the freedom and fundamental civil liberties of the citizen.

And as a citizen, under the first amendment of the US constitution, you are allowed to petition for your rights. And since censoring information from student newspapers (or any newspaper), in a way, goes against the first amendment. Those students can appeal for their indispensable constitutional rights.


As a student, I completely disagree with censoring student newspapers, especially because those students are the ones who are going to lead our world tomorrow, and depriving them of their rights, is teaching them that it is OK to deprive others of their rights. And when they become that authority, the ones with the power, they may even censor information just for pleasure.

That is not something we want. Instead we want leaders who will help enforce our unbeatable constitution. Censoring information in the long run is not going to help us. Therefore we should say the truth, no matter the consequences, and not deprive the citizens of the civil liberties provided by the constitution. We should all work for this common goal, because it affects each of us personally.



Join the Discussion

This article has 4 comments. Post your own now!

sapphire199748 said...
May 3, 2010 at 8:20 pm
honey u rock da hous lol ;)
 
agtha.shellen replied...
May 4, 2010 at 4:12 pm
thanx bengay u rok!!!
 
MissFaber said...
Apr. 28, 2010 at 9:08 pm

Some hardcore stuff. There isn't much more I can add except to say that i agree to the fact that government censorship is, in all ways, incorrect.

But I will pose this question... what about more private forms of censorship? A mother hiding certain facts from her children, for example? Does censorship become acceptable then?

 
agtha.shellen replied...
Apr. 30, 2010 at 3:21 pm
i think its wrong for parents to censor their kids...i think they shouldnt because their kids are going to eventually grow up and find out.....
 
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