Free Speech Threatened by Media Outlets?

By Michael Miller

For a little comic relief, I submit a link to the amazing cartoonist Ben Garrison:  https://grrrgraphics.com/free-speech-fountains/.  Be sure to scroll through his collection of work for some great laughs embedded in the exposure of some outlandish hypocrisy. 
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Ah, the irony. At a Cronkite School recruiting booth at Journalism Education Association Conference in San Francisco, 4-13-18. Photo: George Miller, CitizensJournal.us

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The article about censorship of Conservative/ Libertarian views is disturbing.  Censorship is generally an act attributed to governments. Private entities can suppress ideas/ content as they prefer.  But what happens when institutions like Google, Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, etc, become such vast corridors of communication and the dissemination of ideas, that exclusion by them eliminates certain viewpoints completely from the public eye?  Once these Internet institutions become so vast and powerful and aligned with the interests of deep state power and political correctness, people are deprived of ideas that challenge government and mainstream themes and behavior.  The trend towards centralization of media ownership and the narrowing channels of communication resulting from the growth of a few Internet “Godzillas” is becoming a threat to open debate of conflicting viewpoints.
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When the press was comprised of thousands of competing news outlets, the different sides could always find a venue for dissemination.  Today the few massive and popular internet channels are de facto censoring thought that they deem offensive, politically incorrect, etc.  Posts are deleted that hurt somebody’s feelings, or denigrate some “protected” group, or question government actions.
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The First Amendment was to protect all speech, in recognition that when one entity becomes the arbiter of what is acceptable, we no longer have free speech.
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This is why I choose to extricate myself from the web of mainstream media, TV and newspapers and work at identifying Internet sources that are still capable of independence in challenging the “party line” and asking difficult questions of government.  This is the function and duty of journalism/free press that is no longer found in the major outlets.  So unplug your TV and find alternative media sources that may be the last vestige of the fight to keep unaccountable government from achieving unlimited powers at the expense of our remaining Liberty.
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Captain Michael Miller is a retired NY firefighter who teaches sailing on Amelia Island, Florida, when he is not involved in a theatre production.  Michael cherishes the freedoms championed by our Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights.  He is passionate about keeping the flame of Liberty burning.

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