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Censorship in the United States Research Paper

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Updated: Oct 15th, 2021

Introduction

Freedom of expression is a fundamental right but also a conflicting right as people are free to express their discontent and create upheavals in the working of society. Therefore, censorship of some kind is a must to stabilize or control society through the government’s assistance. First, the widespread support for censorship rest on the important societal goals served by it. It works for the benefit of each individual inhabiting society, whether it’s children, people, or society as a whole. Second, censorship protects each one’s religious or cultural background. They don’t let any sort of speeches publish that incites threat to any religion. Third, censorship is the heredity of government to safeguard a country’s unity, integrity, security. No matter with what sort of freedom people are being endowed, censorship defends national’s pride and honor. Thus, the rationale of censorship is that it is necessary for the protection of the three basic social institutions; the family; the religion; the state.

Essay Body

Censorship is the control of speech and other forms of human expressions which are entrusted for the benefit of society. Precisely, it restricts children from being dragged to the wrong path of life. (Dershowitz, 174) It fights for child pornography, unwanted sexual expressions, restricting them by fixing age compulsion for being participants of lottery games, drugs, visiting restaurants. In addition, it uplifts the social standard of society. It restores the moral values of society and protects people from defamation and obscenity. Apart from this, it checks that no people should enjoy other’s freedom. It allows people to enjoy their freedom by being in their bound. For example, if you have freedom, it does not mean that you will show your natural body in society. Therefore, censorship allows people to relax with their freedom and reminds them of its reciprocal duties and responsibilities.

Censorship refers to the examination of books, periodicals, plays, films, television and radio programs, the internet, and other communication media to alter and suppress those parts thought to be offensive or objectionable for religious tolerance. It does not tolerate any sort of misbehaves with religions. It checks offensive speeches that are intended to stir up aggression against certain groups of religious, racial. Proponents of freedom adhere that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights has mentioned in Article 19, “Everyone has the right to express, opinion, information regardless of frontiers.” Arguably, some circumstances get created in a society where no option is left with the government except “Censorship”. (Harer, 121) Such as, when 13 Nepalese were brutally murdered in Iraq and Nepal went through the destruction of Human Power Agencies and other resources were submerged in the anger on Nepalese people, the government has only one option to put censorship in the form of curfew. Moreover, some scholars criticized censorship on the ground that, “Censorship is an evil and suppresses people’s opinions by acting as totalitarian government.” But, one should not forget the good intention behind this suppression. This suppression is only for benefit of society. Therefore, censorship not only suppresses people’s freedom but also suppresses the evils of society. (Ziegler, 67)

The practice of supervising, restricting, or prohibiting the expression of intellectual conceptions or the dissemination of ideas is as old as the organization of society itself. Someone holding authority or claiming authority was always ready to object to the free circulation of ideas as a threatening danger to existing institutions, religious or political. The two earliest authorities recognized, by men, that of the ruler, whether of the family, the clan, or the State and that of the priest, the representative of the accepted religion, were equally interested in retaining control over the direction and the expression of thought. In the earlier communities, political and religious authority was frequently combined in the same individual. It is probable that in these states the contention for an authoritative control of opinion rested chiefly upon the risk that heretical utterances might interfere with the public peace.

Censorship cannot be explained by describing the United States as a nation hostile to freedom and intolerant of diverse debate, particularly since the country has become home to the greatest diversity of immigrants and ethnic groups the world has ever witnessed. Instead, the occurrence of censorship attempts reflects the remarkable degree of freedom present in society. For instance, the unsuccessful attempts to stop a Nazi demonstration several years ago in a Jewish neighborhood in Skokie, Illinois, only revealed the substantial degree of freedom available even to those who espouse the most unpopular of ideas. Indeed, censorship attempts achieve notoriety primarily because they contrast with the prevailing attitudes of freedom. (Dershowitz, 180)

Political scientists and legal scholars may debate the degree of freedom present in American society, but most people have fairly strong opinions on the freedom they believe they possess. Some of the most common expressions made in casual conversation or heated argument include: “It’s a free country”; “Well, you’re entitled to your own opinion”; and, of course, “You can’t tell me what to do.”

Whether they are or not, most citizens feel that they are free. The public appeal of the gun lobby and its banner of the freedom to own a gun, as well as the harsh reactions of people to any restrictions on their freedom to drive and travel, demonstrate the emotional hold of freedom on the American soul. (Harer, 124) In the United States, as the movies preach, anything can happen and anyone can say whatever he wants. Indeed, according to many social critics, the current problems in society do not arise from restrictions on individual freedom but stem from various excesses of certain types of freedoms.

As the oldest democracy on earth, political freedom has flourished here longer than in any other country. In addition to democratic political freedoms, Americans also enjoy the wide exercise of individual freedoms. Among those are the freedoms of religion, association, privacy, speech, and press. These liberties help construct a tolerant society of relatively free and diverse individuals.

Since Roger Williams departed from Massachusetts Bay Colony to start his settlement in what is now Rhode Island, religious tolerance has been both a legal and cultural principle. Although the early Puritans envisioned a society unified in the Puritan beliefs, it soon became a place of extraordinary religious diversity. From all across Europe came denominations of many kinds. Consequently, one of the constitutional aims of the independence movement was the prevention of any established church in America, particularly the Anglican Church of England. (Wirenius, 214)

In addition to the proliferation of sects in America, the religious activity of Americans has always been intense. The Enlightenment movements in both the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, just as the evangelical movements today, revealed the vast public enthusiasm for religion and religious activity. This activity has also translated into political activity, as various religions have taken part in political reform movements such as abolitionism and antimonopoly of the nineteenth century and the child welfare, social justice, and civil rights movements of the twentieth century.

The courts have long upheld the free exercise of religious beliefs, even though that exercise may conflict with certain secular values and practices. For instance, a child cannot be expelled from school for refusing to salute the flag if such an act would violate the child’s religious beliefs. Nor can a person be forced to recite an oath that includes the phrase “so help me God” if that oath infringes on the person’s spiritual beliefs. (Harer, 127) The Supreme Court has ruled that if an individual is discharged from her job because her religious beliefs do not allow her to work on Saturday, that individual cannot be denied unemployment compensation benefits. Furthermore, compulsory school attendance laws cannot be enforced against children for whom such attendance would violate their religious beliefs. Even statutes forbidding fortune-telling have been held to not apply against persons whose religious exercise would be infringed. And, of course, persons who object to war on religious grounds cannot be forced to perform military duties or service. Even mandatory ROTC for public high school students has been held unconstitutional as applied to conscientious objectors. (Dershowitz, 182)

Although censorship has been defeated many times in the past, it has never been resolved. For to resolve the occurrences of censorship, we must discover and address the social forces underlying censorship crusades. Yet society’s primary focus on the question of censorship has usually occurred in the courts, which have to deal with the legal disputes over censorship activity of the government. The courts, however, can only tell the government how far it can go in controlling or interfering with whatever speech is at issue. (Harer, 128) They cannot determine the initial social and political causes of the eventual government censorship activity, nor can they resolve whatever underlying concerns the advocates for censorship may have been trying to address through censorship. The courts can only uphold or overturn each particular government-sanctioned censorship attempt.

Judicial determinations of specific censorship questions have often failed to resolve in the public mind the rules about that particular kind of censorship. For instance, the Supreme Court ruled in Miller v. State of California that certain obscene speech could be censored if “the average person applying contemporary community standards would find that the work taken as a whole appeals to the prurient interest.” (Wirenius, 212) Although this test was intended as an objective test, it is fraught with vague and uncertain elements and requirements. Thus, even if the public’s censorship attitudes rested on the rulings of the Court, those rulings fail to provide sufficiently specific and objective standards on which the public can rely.

Two important reasons exist for why society should not look to the courts for a fundamental resolution of the censorship question. First, the courts can generally only entertain cases involving government censorship — that is, where some governmental act or regulation infringes or restrains speech. However, since much censorship activity in society takes place outside of any governmental agency or activity, as is particularly the case at present, the courts are excluded from a majority of censorship matters that arise. (Barron, 79) Second, the judicial system can address a censorship issue only long after the particular censorship activity has been in effect and has slowly proceeded through the legal process to a final resolution. Because of the long delays in the judicial process, the courts often cannot aid the public in resolving or avoiding protracted and divisive censorship conflicts that absorb their social and political energies. (Cohen, 91)

This distractive quality of censorship presents one of its greatest dangers. As history has revealed, censorship of particular expressions never endures — the marketplace of ideas is never fully and forever denied the censored speech. Eventually, repressed speech breaks out into unfettered expression. However, the time and energy that society expends in the fight over censorship can never be regained. The more America concentrates its political and social energy on censorship matters, the less attention democratic politics can devote to the more pressing issues of the time. (Wirenius, 214) Consequently, politics becomes less responsive to the real needs of society. Thus, not only does our preoccupation with censorship prevent us from addressing other social concerns that require action, but it also contributes to a politics in which both public trust and political efficiency are eroded.

The distractive power of censorship arises in part from the democratic mindset. Democracy requires public attention on public issues. However, the framers of American democracy devised a political system subordinate to society and thus forced to compete with other social concerns for the attention of the citizenry. Within the scheme of America’s constitutional democracy, the government and political system were to be limited. Consequently, in the American democratic tradition, individuals have generally possessed and exercised a limited amount of political energy and attention. This limited political attention is reflected in the part-time status of many state legislatures. (Chambers, 54)

As a democracy ultimately run by citizens concerned with private careers, family lives, and community activities, America is capable of devoting only so much of its attention to the political arena. The more attention siphoned off by censorship battles, the less that is available for perhaps more pressing commitments. Thus the distractive role: an overly extended emphasis on censorship issues distracts the nation from needed action on other political matters.

It is difficult to determine how much of society’s attention and energy are devoted toward censorship disputes. Censorship has existed in various forms throughout the nation’s history, and therefore we cannot precisely determine the amount of social energy devoted to censorship simply through the presence of such issues. Nonetheless, one rough indication of the social energy consumed by censorship is the amount of attention devoted to such issues in the national political arena.

In education in general, like generations past, we are still exerting heavy censorship of what our children read and see. Within the last year, books including The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Catcher in the Rye, The Grapes of Wrath, and Ulysses were banned or removed from school libraries. Even My Friend Flicka was removed from a sixth-grade reading list in Green Cove Springs, Florida because the book contained the words “damn” twice and “bitch” once. (Dershowitz, 186) A Mankato, Minnesota, school system excluded books advocating corporal punishment, and in the state of California during a recent two-year period there were approximately three hundred censorship challenges to various books, films, and other school materials used in the education curriculum. About half of those challenges were based on religious grounds or objections to depictions of Satan or witchcraft included in such classics as Shakespeare Macbeth and even in Snow White. Even films such as E.T. met with censorship challenges. (Wirenius, 216)

Sexually provocative and explicit materials continue to endure censorship pressures, as they have since public reactions against such classic literature as Nabokov Lolita, Joyce Ulysses, and Lawrence Women in Love. Today, as in the 1960s and 1970s, groups ranging from religious fundamentalists to radical feminists oppose the distribution and content of magazines like Playboy and Penthouse. (Ziegler, 66) As with the play Oh, Calcutta! in the 1960s, controversial plays and movies still feel the threat of censorship. The play, Norman, Is That You? was canceled from various performances across the state of Florida. It is a comedy about a couple who discovers their son is gay. The cancellations, according to gay rights activists, we’re part of a statewide censorship craze. (Barron, 84)

In the music field, things may not have changed greatly since Elvis Presley first came on the scene. Just as many found Elvis’s gyrating pelvis in need of censorship, so too do many find Madonna’s lyrics and antics similarly worthy of censorship. And as 1960s rock groups like The Doors, Frank Zappa, and The Rolling Stones irritated the censorship nerve, so too do contemporary groups like 2 Live Crew and The Dead Kennedys. (Cohen, 85)

Thus, the censorship questions of the last three or four decades have continued to recur and distract American society. Issues of free expression that we thought were settled in the 1960s and 1970s remain with us in the 1980s and 1990s. Though other political issues like budget deficits and crime control persistently remain on the public agenda, unlike censorship issues they do not absorb an inordinately large amount of social attention and energy. The current complaint is that censorship issues command too little attention. In a recent New York Times poll, the respondents named morality and pornography as more important problems facing the nation than those surrounding the savings and loan bailout, child abuse, women’s issues, Soviet relations, family breakdown, and Japanese competition. (Ziegler, 68)

The attention-absorbing power of censorship and its consequent distractive role derives from the public’s tendency to take an immediate interest in censorship matters and to become quickly opinionated on those matters. Unlike complicated budget and foreign policy issues, questions on censorship can be easily understood and lend themselves to rather quick and definite judgments. As the opinion polls demonstrate, few people fail to form an opinion on censorship issues in the political arena, such as flag-burning and the funding of the NEA. Polls conducted in 1990 on the flag-burning issue, for instance, revealed that only 5 percent of the people surveyed had failed to form an opinion on the issue. (Ziegler, 70) On the other hand, polling on such issues as the environment, education policy, and the savings and loan crisis produced “no opinion” responses from up to 20 percent of the respondents. (Hull, 135)

Public opinion tends to be much more flexible or uncertain on issues that are complex or involve judgments on highly specialized information. Government economic programs such as the agricultural program, for instance, are so complex and specialized that few persons understand them. (Cohen, 89) Consequently, only a small segment of the public not involved in a program forms specific and firm opinions about it. Censorship issues, on the other hand, do not involve such highly specialized knowledge or information. They do not involve government programs evolving over decades of political existence. Instead, people can form an opinion on these issues by glancing at the newspaper headlines while drinking a cup of coffee.

Language is one of the few identifying characteristics of a nation and society. As such, it is often an emotive issue. This emotion is seen in countries where, for instance, two or more languages compete for the national identity. Confusion, anger, violence, and separatist movements have characterized the struggles between English-speaking and French-speaking Canada. Differences simply in language, not to mention the content of that language, often inspire emotional reactions. Even the regional differences in American speech tend to prompt emotional responses among persons of different speech groups — Northern, Midland, Southern, and New England. (Hull, 136)

Thus, judgments on censorship issues tend to be formed rather quickly and rather strongly. There is usually no factual research or additional knowledge needed for an individual to form a judgment on such issues. Indeed, very few people proceed to the more abstract and objective question of whether a free society ought to allow a particular repulsive speech. Yet even consideration of this question need not preclude the formation of a strong opinion, since most persons have some concept of freedom that would enable them to reach a fairly definite opinion. (Barron, 78)

As a result of censorship issues quickly galvanizing public opinion, political battles relating to these issues also tend to become particularly fierce and protracted. The debate does little to change minds. Opinions run high and intense, and the political process tends to become a bitter fight rather than a process of resolution. Consider, for example, the intense and dragged-out debates over the various legislative proposals introduced in 1990 in connection with the funding of the NEA and possible restrictions on the types of art funded by the agency. Although a bipartisan commission had been created by Congress to review the NEA’s grant-making procedures, a political impasse and stalemate still occurred in Congress because of wide disagreement over how to handle the agency and the art that it funds. (Hull, 138) This impasse devoured much of Congress’s legislative energies.

As demonstrated by this NEA struggle, inordinately large amounts of energy are consumed in dealing with censorship disputes. This diversion of political energy also results from the emotional nature of censorship matters. Although, as earlier mentioned, speech can carry emotive power in itself; the particular speech that becomes the object of censorship attempts is often speech relating to an especially emotional issue for Americans.

Censorship issues tend to be some of the most emotional issues in the public arena. Not only does it touch upon an activity that lies at the heart of human freedom and that expresses the most personal of all human possessions — thoughts and feelings — censorship also often tends to occur with a speech about moral and cultural issues. These issues evoke strong and passionate emotions and can be highly divisive. Consider, for instance, the abortion issue-obviously a very emotional one. (Cohen, 91) Censorship has been frequently attempted on this issue by groups on both sides of the debate. The most recent examples of censorship of abortion-related speech include, by the pro-life faction, a federal regulation prohibiting clinics receiving federal funds from even mentioning abortion, and, by the pro-choice side, the attempts to ban or restrict the picketing of pro-lifers outside abortion clinics. Thus, the emotional nature of abortion, as demonstrated by its political history throughout the last two decades, clearly contributes to the distractive power of censorship issues relating to the expression of abortion views. (Cole, 204)

The emotional aspect, and hence distractive power, of censorship, also arises from the symbolic nature of speech. When a person burns a flag on national television, he or she is not perceived to be simply performing an isolated individual act. Instead, at issue is the symbol of a community, a nation, and perhaps even a way of life or a set of values. Consequently, such an act inspires emotional reactions in each person who witnesses it through the media, primarily because of the emotional feeling about that which the flag symbolizes. (Norris, 85) A similar reaction occurs with racist or pornographic speech. Such speech becomes a symbol for the type of society in which the speech is made. When we hear racist speech, a desire for censorship may run high from the symbolism created — since symbols often define society, symbols of racism may denote a racist society.

As a symbol, speech can epitomize or even become the reality surrogate of personal beliefs and values. Expressions about sex, for instance, can become emotionally and even logically the act about which one speaks. Thus, if a person thinks a certain sexual act is morally wrong, any expressions about that activity can also be morally wrong. Though it is a product of a logical language system and a cognitive reasoning process, speech nonetheless carries great emotional intensity as it touches the human soul and heart, as well as the mind. And when speech occurs on value-laden or personal issues, the response to that speech will be highly emotional. (Norris, 91) Moreover, it need hardly be said that emotional matters absorb and consume our attention and energies more than more unemotional ones.

Consequently, when censorship conflicts enter the political forum, they often become intensely emotional. As a result, the political system bogs down in divisiveness. Reflecting the emotions of the individuals participating in it, politics becomes emotional in itself. More passionate speeches are made, and even more, emotions are aroused. In the recent NEA funding debate, for instance, Congress went into great detail about what kind of art the agency should fund. With no other agency does Congress try to monitor and control so closely the daily workings and operation. (Cohen, 228) Yet while the economy continued to lumber under the budget deficit and children went hungry and uneducated, Congress devoted days and weeks talking about art. Because of the symbolic, emotional nature of the issue, however, Congress was not only talking about art, it was discussing national values and identity.

Symbolic and emotional issues like censorship have played an increasingly distractive role in modern American politics. During the last several years, the great ideological battles have shifted from the field of economics to that of culture. Controversies over free speech and the arts, multiculturalism, and education, and the relations between races and genders have stirred more intense passions than have any disputes over economic policy or electoral politics. (Cohen, 230)

E. J. Dionne argues in Why Americans Hate Politics that our political leaders have allowed politics to be dominated by symbolic issues that have little practical or social relevance. (Delgado, 45) For instance, instead of dealing with the causes of crime, politicians simply debate the symbolic and largely ineffectual death penalty. As Dionne recognizes, symbolic issues tend to be highly emotional and tend to distract the political system from other more relevant and urgent issues.

Like the death penalty, abortion is also, in part, a symbolic issue. Compared with issues of child care and education, it exerts little practical influence on the daily family life of most Americans. Yet it has consumed a disproportionate share of political attention in recent decades and has caused great divisiveness in the political process. Abortion has not only inspired intense passions but also produced rigid positions on each side of the issue. In 1988, only 2 percent of the population had no opinion on the question of the legality of abortion, and when asked if the advanced medical knowledge gained over the last decade about the first stages of life had changed their opinion, more than 70 percent responded in the negative. (Delgado, 52) Though the rigidity and influence of such issues as abortion may be a handicap of the political system, it also is a problem of censorship, since it is one of the more emotional issues that cause similar distractions to society.

The distractive effect of censorship further elevates the need to discover and resolve the underlying causes and motivations for censorship. The challenge is to resolve censorship in a manner that will lessen its occurrence and its consequent distractive power. We must attempt to go beyond simply waging the censorship war — fighting over whether censorship should occur every time controversial expressions take place. History demonstrates that no matter how many times censorship is defeated, it continues to return. And if the recent decade is any indication, censorship attempts are not only persisting but increasing. (Cole, 202)

Since censorship has never been resolved, in the sense that its social foundations have not been discovered and addressed, it has had a snowball or cumulative effect over time. Even though particular censorship attempts, such as those dealing with flag desecration and sexually explicit expressions, may fail regularly, they contribute to a snowball effect insofar as they continually related and their underlying causes remain unaddressed. As society becomes increasingly familiar and comfortable with censorship, the recurrent pattern of censorship is further solidified.

Court judgments on censorship disputes have not fundamentally resolved the public’s concerns or censorship desires. For decades the judiciary has handled censorship cases involving sexual and political discussion. In the 1950s, the courts addressed censorship of ideas perceived to be un-American, while in the 1980s the courts addressed censorship of supposedly un-American activities like flag-burning. And throughout the last four decades, the courts have tried to draw the line between protected sexual speech and constitutionally unprotected obscenity. (Cohen, 233) Yet despite the volume of case law, censorship attempts keep surfacing in the public — a public whose attitudes and concerns underlying and motivating its censorship impulse have not been settled by any court decree.

The snowball effect of recurrent censorship also endangers the growth and development of the new communications technologies emerging today. The introduction of new forms of media and communications services has historically been accompanied by a wave of censorship aimed at that new media form. When motion pictures were introduced, they inspired intense censorship activity. Books, which had been the previous subject of censorship, suddenly were significantly freer of such pressures. When magazines and paperbacks became popular in the 1950s, censorship advocates immediately turned to these forms. Television and record albums, in turn, became the censors’ targets in the 1960s and 1970s. (Kick, 136) The recent introduction of computer information systems, electronic mail, computer bulletin boards, and telecommunication services like the 900 system promise to greatly expand the individual’s ability to communicate personally with a greater number and diversity of people. (Delgado, 55) Not surprisingly, however, these new media and communications technologies are being met with censorship pressures. If censorship is to be kept from suffocating these new communications services before they can fully develop, as it almost did with the motion picture industry in the 1930s, the snowball effect of the censorship impulse in society must be lessened. Otherwise, censorship attempts in the future will be more intense and will have deeper social roots, and will thus be harder to defeat. Furthermore, the snowball effect will propagate the illusory influence of censorship.

Censorship often creates the illusion that a social problem has disappeared if the speech highlighting that problem has disappeared. However, just because a child quits complaining about vegetables does not mean that she is going to eat them. Likewise, just because the social dialogue contains fewer references to violence or AIDS does not mean that those problems have diminished, particularly if the decline in a speech about those problems results from censorship pressures.

The human tendency, of course, is to try to eradicate the appearance of a problem, especially if the problem itself cannot be easily remedied. That is why parental demands for cleanrooms often translate into a more compact but hidden mess under the bed. (Kick, 139) Just as the progressive social reform movement of the early twentieth century initially sought to clean up society and ended up trying to clean up the books that society read, activists today who want to stop alcohol and tobacco abuse or who want to fight racism frequently end up trying to censor the speech signifying those problems.

Censorship offers an easy way to substitute quality of life concerns for the quality of speech concerns. Particularly in our modern media society, we tend to think that if the problem is not talked about or depicted on television, it has gone away. But if censorship is used to achieve this illusion, it has given a false sense of security — false security that must be maintained through increased censorship in the future. Consequently, we become more and more dependent on censorship. (Chambers, 50)

Only by confronting truth through open and free discussion can this snowball effect of censorship be reduced. The desire for truth has often proved an effective censorship repellent. Since the pursuit of truth is the first step to meaningful action, a close tie exists between speech, truth, and action. If we censor our speech, we tie our hands to action and close our minds to the truth. Senator Bill Bradley recognized this need for open dialogue in a recent speech on race relations. (Delgado, 57) He warned that our unwillingness to speak straightforwardly about race only causes the underlying race problems to continue simmering. In warning against our self-imposed censorship on such sensitive and emotional issues, Senator Bradley stated that “we will never understand the problems of our cities until a white person can point out the epidemic of minority illegitimacy, drug addiction and homicides without being charged a racist.” Indeed, the desire for truth and action greatly influences the American attitudes toward speech and censorship. (Cole, 197)

As Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes stated in his 1919 dissent in Abrams v. the United States, speech in America deserves protection and freedom because only through the competition of free and unhindered speech can society discover the truth necessary to govern itself as a democracy. (Chambers, 54) Since the people in a democratic society are the ultimate arbiters of social truth, there must exist a means by which the public can learn and acquire truth. As Justice Holmes stated, and as judges and philosophers since have recognized the best and perhaps only means to acquire such truth is through open and free expression of ideas. (Cole, 199) Constitutional protections of free speech in the twentieth century have derived in large part from the American conception of democratic truth as the result of the free competition of ideas. Therefore, it is logical that censorship attitudes likewise derive from the underlying social attitudes toward truth.

Conclusion

Censorship defends national sovereignty. First and foremost, it does not take a chance of exposing national documentaries to the public or foreigners because of the high risk associated with it. For example, it keeps secret the national security documents, like troop movements in wartime. Also, it prohibits anyone from offending national flags, symbols, songs, and defense. Similarly, it maintains political stability in the country. It restricts people to go for frequent and unwanted strikes or revolts. Similarly, it allows society to carry out its societal goals smoothly and the economy to plan out for its short-term and long-term goals by preventing civil disobedience movements. As, for example, some credit for the booming economic condition of china goes to its Communists party which follows less freedom i.e. censorship. For these reasons, censorship guides society along with its economy to track into the development process rather than being trapped into the web of political instability.

In short, no one can deny that freedom of expression is born right of people. But as the famous saying goes, “man is born free and he is chained everywhere” accordingly some circumstances outcome in a society where implementation of censorship is a must. However, censorship without any base is evil and the government which adopts it is nothing more than a dictator. Therefore, any kind of censorship to be practiced must be provided by law, pursues a legitimate aim, and must be in proportion to its aim. Finally, the government is selected by people and they would not get anything by oppressing their selector’s rights, so selectors should trust the government for making censorship.

Works Cited

Barron, Jerome A. and Dienes, C. Thomas. First Amendment Law in a Nutshell. St. Paul, MN: Thomson/West, 2004: 78-84.

Chambers, Simone and Costain, Anne. eds. Deliberation, Democracy, and the Media. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2000: 50-54.

Cohen A. Raphael. The Scope of Tolerance: Studies on the Costs of Free Expression and Freedom of the Press. New York: Routledge, 2005: 228-233.

Cohen, David B. and Wells, John W. eds. American National Security and Civil Liberties in an Era of Terrorism. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004: 85-91.

Cole, David. Enemy Aliens: Double Standards and Constitutional Freedoms in the War on Terrorism. New York: New Press, 2003: 197-204.

Delgado, Richard and Stefancic, Jean. Understanding Words That Wound. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 2004: 45-57.

Dershowitz, Alan. Rights from Wrongs: A Secular Theory of the Origins of Rights. New York: Basic Books, 2004: 174-186.

Harer, John B. and Harrell, Eugenia E. People for and Against Unrestricted Expression. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 2002: 121-128.

Hull, Mary E.. Censorship in America: A Reference Handbook. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, 1999: 135-138.

Kick, Russ. ed. Abuse Your Illusions: The Disinformation Guide to Media Mirages and Establishment Lies. New York: Disinformation, 2003: 136-139.

Norris Pippa, Kern Montague, and Just Marion, eds. Framing Terrorism: The News Media, the Government, and the Public. New York: Routledge, 2003: 85-91.

Wirenius, John F. First Amendment, First Principles: Verbal Acts and Freedom of Expression. New York: Holmes, 2000: 212-216.

Ziegler, John. The Death of Free Speech: How Our Broken National Dialogue Has Killed the Truth and Divided America. Nashville, TN: Cumberland House, 2005: 66-70.

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