Why the World Respects Trump More Than the Media

World

Freedom of speech is one of the most important rights in the United States. In many parts of the world—even Western nations—they do not have the unabashed, unregulated, unrestrained freedom Americans have in voicing their opinions.

I’ve have written in the past how in Europe, there are various limits to speech. Even in the United Kingdom people can be penalized if what they say offends anyone. But such concepts are completely alien in the United States. We can say whatever we like, about whomever we like, wherever and whenever we like.

Although freedom appears to be abused quite often, it is the foundation for a free and democratic society. One of the first things denied in a dictatorship is freedom of speech. People ruled by an authoritarian must be controlled completely. That means they cannot speak their mind, or else they might criticize their leader.

Criticism can lead to actions, like threatening to overthrow or vote out a bad ruler. So, dictatorships rule by fear. Around the world, there are people who can face serious punishment for speaking out against their leaders. Not so in America. Free speech is a vital aspect of our democracy. Without it, we wouldn’t have our nation.

Yet perhaps our freedom of speech, coupled with freedom of the press, has created a toxic environment within our nation. Being free to say whatever we want (especially online) is not just a privilege. As with everything else, it should come with a measure of responsibility.

We all knew that kid who shot his mouth off growing up. More often than not, he got a good smack in the face for his efforts. Were his freedoms being squelched? No, he was just learning you cannot be a smart ass without repercussions (and if you’re wondering yes, that smart ass was often yours truly).

In our modern society, there seems to be freedom without responsibility. Our media is comfortable publishing wild speculation, rumors, and naked bias, with zero accountability. They seem to think they can openly lie without repercussions.

The mainstream media is on borrowed time. We know that. Outlets like CNN, HuffoPo, and the New York Times cannot continue to publish libel and unsubstantiated rumors about our leaders forever and get away with it. We already know that the Times are hemorrhaging money; their only real source of revenue is in renting out their expensive building. There will a come a time soon when they can no longer conduct business.

But in the interim, we have to witness once respectable institutions abuse our most fundamental rights. The result is people—from all walks of life—believing the most ridiculous nonsense.

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