Speak No Evil Essay

This essay has a total of 692 words and 4 pages.

Speak No Evil



Freedom of expression, and open access to media, are as fundamental to the survival of
Progress as the sun and rain are to the survival of planet Earth. Yet censorship remains a
traditional response of any group that finds itself offended at another's message or
creative indulgence.

The argument that because they serve the "public interest," media should willingly accept
a moral arbiter to decide what will and what will not be disseminated is both uninformed
and dangerous. The biggest problem is that nobody will have the opportunity to vote for
the people charged with determining what information is left on the cutting room floor.
Worse yet, certain lower life forms with an eye on world domination will always find ways
to apply this primitive form of babysitting to their own sinister ends.

Because the new communications paradigm calls only for media to get bigger-not
better-access to media is more costly. As corporate interests pool their resources to
control the most print and broadcast outlets allowable by law, certain news stories will
surely be censored. Media is market-driven (that is, it needs an audience), and less
"marketable" stories will always be ignored.

For example, only cave dwellers and the cable-TV impaired could have possibly missed
NASA's most recent PR coup, the landing of Voyager on Mars. Don't believe that CNN,
C-SPAN, MSNBC, CNBC and all the rest were planning to feature this as a major story from
the beginning. The Media spun the Mars story big time because People were interested in
it, the same way we are always interested in exploration, at pushing boundaries. It's the
same reason the book Undaunted Courage is on the Best Seller list, and why filmmaker Ken
Burns (The Civil War, Baseball) is giving Lewis & Clark his mega-mini-series treatment.
Because Lewis & Clark were the baddest explorers ever, and, in the immortal words of
Fleetwood Mac, heroes are so hard to find.

Back to NASA. The story you probably haven't heard much about is that this month, NASA
intends to launch 72 pounds of Plutonium 238 into an orbit 300 miles high. An accident
during takeoff potentially rain radiation poisoning down on 5 billion people. That's not
something the bean want to see above the fold of their newspapers, or chirping from the
mouths of their Stepford TV newsreaders.

How does this affect the consumer? "Shareholder economics" typically drives up costs to
advertisers and ultimately to those they are trying to reach with their clever jingles.
Not even Nostradamus could have predicted the wide range of social, political, financial
and other points of view being filtered by this new business model.

Don't like gays? Use your media clout to block alternative lifestyle programs that feature
information about employment discrimination, HIV and other important issues. Political
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