By: Russell Hite
Should governments censor the Internet? This has been an on going debate for years. It has intensified over recent years with the growth of the Internet, and with more people using the Internet, and being exposed to what it has to offer. Many people have asked, what information should I have access too? In my opinion there is no correct answer to that question. You will always hear a variety of answers. An issue such as pornography to children seems to be one of the biggest topics. Inappropriate things are found on the Internet each day. Some people argue that censoring the Internet is unconstitutional. The Internet is the best source for people to express opinions and facts. Its said that “Freedom of speech” or “Freedom of press” is guaranteed by the First Amendment. For that reason, some people argue that censorship of the Internet is illegal. Censoring the Internet would be an uphill battle for the government to do. The government would have to invest time and man power to make it happen. Another issue would be, the government would have to get all other countries to support the idea.
Information that you do not want your child to see should be a parent’s responsibility. However, with technology today that is almost impossible. There are other sources of media related things. There is the T.V., magazines and movies. All these forms of media can give unfavorable examples towards people, places, and things. Such as the use of drugs, guns and murder. For example, if a child’s favorite video game is “Grand Theft Auto” where shooting guns, car jacking people, going on missions to kill people is advertised, this may scar your child. You do not want your child to grow up thinking these things are okay to do. It is the parents’ responsibility to keep their children as pure as possible.
With so many websites like Twitter, Facebook, and MySpace, how can every inappropriate thing be removed in a world that seems to have no boundaries? With that being said more structured governments censor the web. Chine establishes certain software that censors some materials its citizens cannot see. That would not work here in the United States. We to a degree are spoiled with the freedom of speech, and are so use to it, that if we were in a more controlled environment, we probably would go crazy. We would not like it.
Even with as many people saying no to the question, there are people out there that disagree. Some people say the government can be in peoples business. The reason for this is because parents do not want their children to learn anything they should not have to. Also some people say that it is the governments right to censor material they classify as inappropriate.
Sexually explicit sites are very common on the Internet. Most sites do very little, if anything at all to prevent children from viewing their material. However, the people that say the government should censor the web also say that the government cannot stop people from saying what they want to say. Others are torn about the situation. Saying that the government censorship is a violation of privacy and free speech. However they would like their children to go online one day without seeing filth on the Internet. The Internet grows every year. There are more websites and more people posting things on the web. There are also a growing number of people who use the Internet. There is a study that shows in 2000, there were 361 million Internet users. There was another study done ten years later that showed it jumped significantly. In 2010 there were 1.967 million Internet users. That is five times more then in 2000. The Internet has also become more spread out, and more global. In 2000 73 percent of all Internet users were accounted for in the top 10 countries. That number decreased in 2010 to 63