On #WorldBookDay let us remember that the majority of people in the world do not have the right to read what they want, or say what they want, or wear what they want. Censorship and oppression are on the march, and we, those who are lucky enough to live in a freedom based society, owe an obligation to support another’s fight for human rights.
- Democracy faced its most serious crisis in decades in 2017 as its basic tenets—including guarantees of free and fair elections, the rights of minorities, freedom of the press, and the rule of law—came under attack around the world.
- Seventy-one countries suffered net declines in political rights and civil liberties, with only 35 registering gains. This marked the 12th consecutive year of decline in global freedom.
- The United States retreated from its traditional role as both a champion and an exemplar of democracy amid an accelerating decline in American political rights and civil liberties.
- Over the period since the 12-year global slide began in 2006, 113 countries have seen a net decline, and only 62 have experienced a net improvement.
For a country by country report click HERE
And yes, I know that this post is political, which is something I do try to avoid here. However, since my blog is dedicated to the free exchange of words, ideas, and thoughts, the reality that most people in the world do not have this luxury is something that we, the lucky minority, need to remind ourselves. Freedom is not simply the purview of the first world, or nations that follow Jeffersonian democracy, the Magna Carta, or the Declaration of Human Rights. Freedom is the birthright of every human being no matter their ethnicity, religion, race, or creed.
Those that wish to deny others access to life, liberty, and property due to some misbegotten idea of multiculturalism, or a misdirected belief that all cultures are equal, fail the basic test of humanity. For every person, no matter where they live, has the right to achieve their truth. Any society that destroys, decries, or otherwise curtails another human’s self-determination does not deserve respect, or acknowledgement of purpose. So no, all cultures, all forms of government, or economic systems are not equal. Those overseers that need to destroy the human spirit in order to remain in power are not equal to those structures that allow for dissent, protest, and change.
Oppression is not a choice of those that have access to information, or freedom of expression. That is why on #WorldBookDay we need to be mindful that the majority of communities around the world suppress the freedoms that we in the west celebrate. And we need to reevaluate our purposes when we excuse tyranny in the guise of culture and tradition.
*information and picture above are from FreedomHouse.org