Freedom On The Wane. Or Why This Stuff Matters

Man is inherently free.  There are few more elemental truths. We were not conceived and born indentured or the property of anyone or any power. We are simply and wonderfully free. That is our natural state. This is true whether you believe that freedom to be a gift from your maker, or you believe your ancestors crawled up out of the primordial soup. Everyone, deist and atheist alike, should, in fact must, have an interest in freedom, lest they simply become no more than a slave, subject to the whims of their owner or king.

As a matter of convenience and practicality, we make a free decision to form ourselves into societies, states and countries. We freely authorize elected governments to run things for us. The sustaining of freedom in any such constitutional form of government depends almost entirely on an informed, educated and involved citizenry. Fundamental to that process is an independent and unbiased press. That is why the fourth estate is “granted” a special place in society, including “freedom of the press”.

The continuum of freedom has, in the West, been steadily progressing since the Middle Ages.  Maybe this is in part because of the development of the printing press and the ability to more widely disseminate information (“news”).  It may owe a debt to The Enlightenment.  No matter. We have achieved a state of governed freedom unthought-of in the time of pharaohs and dynasties.

No longer. Freedom in the west is tragically receding. And it is in no small part a result of a massive failure of the press. Examples abound. But often they are sufficiently subtle, or we are so caught up in our daily lives, that they go unnoticed. And like the slowly boiling frog, our freedom evaporates.  Usurped by leaders who do not act in the best interest of the people, and who are aided and abetted by a biased media. A media who no longer speak truth to power.  A media who no longer provide unbiased reporting sufficient to allow people to make informed decisions.

Don’t get it?  Here are two stories, run by two different Canadian press agencies on the same day (October 5, 2013). They have to do with two Canadian citizens (a doctor and a filmmaker) who were in Egypt during the recent uprising and ousting of the Muslim Brotherhood government. The pair was arrested by the police who suspected them of being involved in activities related to the riots. Read the stories in order:

By The Canadian Press Agency (“CP”), as it appeared in the Huffington Post Canada:  http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/10/05/greyson-loubani-egypt_n_4051556.html

By QMI Agency (“QMI”), as it appeared in The Toronto Sun: http://www.torontosun.com/2013/10/05/telling-facts-emerge-in-the-loubani-greyson-tale-and-their-explanation-proves-absurd

If you are struck by the stark contrast between the two different stories, you will realize that the CP has an agenda – one that, whatever it may be, is served by not fully informing its readers.  The QMI story gives you all the facts, and assumes you have the intelligence to sort it out for yourself.  Moral of the story?  Realize that the media has, to a great extent, abandoned its independence.  Understand the difference between sources that are opinion, and those that provide factual news reporting.  And strive to be informed.

Your freedom depends on it.

Related Posts

When All Has Been Said And Done

God has planted eternity in men’s hearts and minds, a divinely implanted sense of a purpose working through the ages which nothing under the sun

On Bondage and Nobility

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are

The Mystery of Grace

I do not understand the mystery of grace. Only that it meets us where we are and does not leave us where it found us.

Obedience And Service

For the Lord watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked leads to destruction. Psalm 1:6 NIV Sometimes I think