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Essay on “Uses and Abuses of Censorship” Complete Essay for Class 9, Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

Uses and Abuses of Censorship

 

Censorship is the laws concerned with state restrictions on the expression, the publication, and the dissemination of information. In a democracy, freedom from censorship is an important protection of particular freedom, especially freedom of speech and freedom of the press. Censorship and the ideology supporting it go back to ancient times. Every society has had customs, taboos, or laws by which speech, play, dress, religious observance, and sexual expression were regulated.

In modern democratic countries, certain basic constitutional principles are generally accepted: a person’s religious beliefs and forms of worship are matters of strictly private conscience, into which no government act or official may intrude; no religious requirements may be stipulated for any public office or benefit; and the state and religion are independent of each other. Although these principles do not resolve all problems, and perplexing questions must be faced continually, the principles have established peaceful relations between the government and religious systems in truly democratic societies.

The uses and abuses of censorship in developed and developing countries have been under discussion for quite a long time. Although societies claim for freedom of thought and expression, which are indispensable to live peacefully, censorship is sometimes necesary, due to the fact that its abuse may badly influence the behaviour of a society and may also result in anarchism.

There are different kinds of censorship. The most common ones are: governmental, Press and television censorship. The first one is connected with the respect and consideration people should live with. If the citizens of a country do not have the chance of giving voice to their discontent, they feel frustrated and inhibited. Freedom of expression is extremely important in this case. People must have the opportunity of saying what they think in order to improve the conditions of living, without governmental censorship. Unfortunately, this freedom is sometimes exercised in a wrong way obliging the Government to use its power to censor  demonstrators, because they behave violently and irrationally. It is clear, then, that it is highly positive that people have freedom of expression, but on the other hand, that freedom must be used in logical and civilized terms, to improve life in society, otherwise its had use may lead to a social chaos. Press censorship is quite common nowadays. The Press plays an important part in modern societies. Although there are some exceptions, some journalists and reporters are nowadays more reliable than most of the politicians. Independent Press has the freedom of publishing true facts about everyday governmental activities and decisions. In some cases, if the Press did not investigate political and government affairs, people would never know some decisions, which most of the times, are in favour of leaders and against grass roots. It is said that the press is the fourth estate by the influence it has on the society, consequently, it should never be censored by the Government. Unfortunately, sometimes this freedom is used by journalists with political tendencies, so Government should have the power to investigate secret arrangements between the opposite political parties and some corrupt journalists.

Another common case of censorship is the one shown by the Government, which in past times used to censor some television programmes. There are a lot of examples of programmes, which were prohibited by governmental organizations. This was the clearest exemplification of censorship in past times. Nowadays, there is a tendency to think that people have the freedom to single out programmes while zapping. One of the main arguments against television censorship is that people are free to choose and that artists are allowed to create, however, there is no doubt that some programmes are extremely harmful, especially for adolescents. Consequently, and in spite of political risks, Government should take some measures as regards some pernicious and detrimental programmes on television using censorship, if necessary.

It is believed that in a democratic political system, censorship must not be accepted under any circumstances, however, there should be some exceptions taking into account some cases which may incite to a general and massive state of violence which  highly risk that democratic system of government.

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