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Process Paper

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Parents' Music Resource Center (PMRC)
Impact on the World Today
Process Paper
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     “They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” In this quote Benjamin Franklin is saying that anyone who is willing to give up his or her fundamental freedoms for safety should not be granted either freedom or safety.


Censorship is important in history because whenever someone has a contradictory idea, someone else is there to censor it because censorship limits true communication and expression and allows ideas to be controlled.


     A website best expresses our project because it will be available to the public and we feel that would be best because people beyond the limits of our school and the competition can view our ideas.  Some key sources we cited were: The PMRC congressional hearings, different anti-censorship groups, and various articles on events in history that had to do with censorship.  Through researching, we learned a lot about what censorship does to people and how censorship has impacted the world.


     Censorship is “to examine in order to suppress or delete anything considered objectionable” (Webster dictionary definition) so basically censorship is the act of withholding information that “isn’t fit” for people to interpret.  An act of censorship can be viewed two ways: as an act of protection, or an act of taking away our First Amendment right to free speech.


     Now that we’re in the 21st century, censorship has gotten out of hand.  News isn’t accurate, musicians cannot express their ideas, and authors can’t write what they feel.  Some countries are totally censored by the government.


     Although most cases of censorship are viewed as tampering with our rights to free speech; some forms of censorship are for the protection of the people.  For example, censorship dealing with television is mainly used to protect children from things thought to be inappropriate for their age.  Of course, this could also be used as an example for explaining how censorship robs us of our rights.  Censorship of television broadcasts could also be interpreted as hiding the truth about important issues so that people can’t think and therefore can’t rebel, and/or take action.


     Another major target of censorship is music.  Since music is such and influence on peoples’ lives, when it gets censored, people become very upset.  Music that is censored is generally music containing: extremely foul language, sexual innuendo, or other obscenities inappropriate for children.  In some states, people under 18 who buy CDs with a parental advisory label are liable to be arrested and forced to do community service.


      Therefore, censorship restricts communication and allows thoughts to be governed.  Throughout history, people have fought and died to end the plague that is censorship to no avail, because, in the words of John F. Kennedy, “We are not afraid to entrust the American people with unpleasant facts, foreign ideas, alien philosophies, and competitive values.  For a nation that is afraid to let its people judge the truth and falsehood in an open market is a nation that is afraid of its people.”