Saturday, October 30, 2010

An Introduction to My Theory on the Damage of Censorship

One of the most commonly censored parts of daily life is language. There are certain words that are considered so heinous that we dare not utter them. There are words that are censored all across the boards, some that are only censored in certain areas, but generally there is a list of considered 'bad words' that we see being disallowed across T.V., Radio, Movies/Video games (with the appropriate rating in mind), and writing to name some. However these words are also censored on an individual level, at the home, office, gym, and any number of social gathering spots in which one may find his or herself. However, what security, if any, does this provide to people? Does it keep us from becoming corrupt fiends who care only for themselves and don't mind harming others? Certainly this cannot be the case, because if that were the case; immediately upon hearing any censored words for the first time one would become forever stained with these characteristics.
In fact, I think you will find that the entire idea of censoring just the words is absolutely ludicrous. This is due the fact that it places the maliciousness solely upon words instead of the idea. Take a word like “nigger” for example. There is nothing inherently wrong with this word, because it's just a word in itself. Many people would claim that it is a racist word, and should never be used, but when people get into this mindset what they overlook  is the fact that language is merely a tool. All words are merely a conjugation of different sounds with which we place a meaning to in so that we may better communicate. Well jeez, what does that change about the word nigger? What it means is, that the inherent racism of words like nigger does not come from the word itself, but instead from the ideas we are willing to place upon the word. Naturally, this concludes that the racism from words such as this come not from the word, but from ourselves, because we are willing to accept that such a hateful notion has a place within our language/society and that it even deserves its own official slot within the language reserved specifically for it.
However most everyone sees this as an effective means of containment because while it exists; people all generally agree to never use the word even while acknowledging its existence. Here is why this is a damaging mindset for society to approach the issue with: It allows for the reservation of hateful ideas to be used only in situations in which people are willing to break their social normalizers and try to caste dehumanizing and super degrading characteristics onto other individuals based on a collectivist criteria. Inevitably this leads to the attachment of negative emotions to certain words which allow us to claim that the words themselves are inherently bad and this is because emotional attachments to objects lead to irrationalities in logical thought processes. So instead of viewing the word as a constructive tool for people to use it is instead lent the characteristic of being attached to an interlocking web of negative emotions. Because of this, the censoring of language permeates the existence of hatred rather than quashes it. After all, ultimately the real problem is ignored, and that's because the language is accepted as being hateful in the first place. Instead of secluding these words and forever ingraining such systematic hatred to the language; people should instead seek to formulate a way with which these words may be (over time) reversed and used in a more positive manner. Hiding hatred does not destroy it, but trying to remove the characteristic of hatred from a tarnished idea, object, ect. often times is an effective means of minimizing hatred and its influence. Through this the only logical solution I can find is that it does more harm than good to try and censor language.

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