Free speech and government are always at odds. You wouldn’t think this would be the case, but it is true. You see, in a society where the news is controlled, your viewpoint is the only one heard, and you can control the messaging.
Free speech has the tendency to allow for things that you can’t control to be said, and because of this, a lot of time is spent, even in free societies, in controlling speech.
So, if it’s true that government and free speech are enemies, and yet the people want free speech, what can be done? Well, you can use fear to attempt to control speech—in the name of security.
Law professors warn that new legislation allows state to seize websites merely for linking to other websites that host copyrighted material.
New legislation that would give the US government the power to seize website domains on a whim with no oversight merely for linking to sites that host copyrighted material has been labeled a hallmark of “repressive regimes” by a group of law professors who warn that the bill allows the state to “break the Internet addressing system”.
The Protect IP bill, currently stalled in the Senate, represents a death blow to Internet freedom of speech.
I do not believe this bill got passed, because the Internet rebelled; however, that doesn’t mean that the government won’t try again. You see, the government knows that as long as you can get your information from multiple sources, or read leaks from people like Julian Assange, etc., they don’t have as much control as they would like.
And I’m not one of those that thinks that government is intentionally malicious. Rather than the evil super-villain, I believe that many that go into government believe that they can solve problems for people with their power (great power, great responsibility and all), and so they go about trying. What they don’t realize is the trade-offs and the sacrifices, and that as they strip away liberty under the guise of protecting the people, they actually are changing the country, and making it possible for future government to take away more liberty.
So let free speech reign, even if you don’t like what’s being said. It’s better to be free than to have freedom chipped away in the name of fixing things for us.