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Limitations Of A Free Media

by Antoinette Mullins


A free media is an element of American society that has always been treasured and something many other countries have never known. However from the time that America fought for this amount of freedom to present day the question, how much is too much freedom (if such a thing even exist), has always come up. When an advertisement against reparations for slavery was placed in Brown University's protest proved that for many people there is such a thing as too much freedom.

In his debate, David Horowitz, presented ten reasons why reparations for slavery should not be made. He called the reparations racist against white people and he also stated that it is not clear to whom the debt should be paid. In fact he believes that there is a debt that Blacks owe to America. Slavery was a horrible and indescribable event by all accounts making Horowitz ideas wrong and unjustifiable, but the media has always been an area where information is freely passed. A place where writers have tried to connect to the general public and express different kinds of opinions freely. To keep this freedom exceptions cannot be made for a viewpoint that the majority of America does not agree with. It would ultimately affect the freedom we have and take censorship to new and darker heights.

There should never be an option of targeting a way of thinking (however wrong that way of thinking may be) and prevent it from being expressed in the media, whether the viewpoint is expressed in a short advertisement or a 150 page essay. Even if the people who are trying to prevent this freedom are the readers themselves. This was the case with Horowitz's advertisement when reports came up that newspapers containing the ad were stolen. It can not be stressed enough how the advertisement in Brown University's newpaper was so otherworldly wrong it can not even begin to be described making it very understandable why people would be outraged. However the people who stole the newspaper were preventing his views from getting across and were wrong as well. Yes, even people who have ideas as wrong as his have a right to get those ideas across despite the disturbance and controversy it may cause.

The controversy and the explosion of protest can be looked at as a good thing, even beneficial. It's a reality check to Americans that even through the nation has come a long way it still has a very long way to go. This obviously can be seen by Horowitz's advertisement about things that are extremely backward and frightfully misinformative. For instance, he describes slavery as a bump in the road and points out how many African Americans have been successful. At the same time he forgets the dominate race displayed in the media and the prejudice that many non-whites are forced to face on a daily basis that was rooted in slavery. After all how does Horowitz explains the beginnings of the KKK and other hate groups? This controversy is a way of viewing how many steps backwards some people have taken in terms of certain issues, and further more, how many of those steps even more people refuse to take.


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