Thoughts about Freedom

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

(Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759)

How much have we already given up?

For minor crimes like repeated shoplifting it is allowed to register genetical data - a highly private and vital information which can ruin existences. What's next???

Video cameras watch all our movements in Shopping malls, gas stations and even in public places like the city center of Mannheim with approval by the government.

The big "Listening attack" was realized against great resistance by the CDU party. There also "emergency laws" again...

The public discussions with the concerned citizenship against releases of genemanipulated organisms have been stopped! The companies try to push goods on the market which nobody want.

The last refugal areas for humans and nature have been converted to "nature protection areas", self-appointed guards control here if nature lovers leave the paths or pick fruits and mushrooms. But this is probably not sensible in each case and time.

Laws for safety belts and helmets have been realized although this affects only the own body and hurts no other persons. Are such laws created for the individual or the big companies and insurance agencies?

The CIA wants to control everything in the computer biz and demands "security holes" in his favor, but the user cannot see what happens with his data.

Photography is prohibited in Army camps, nowadays the US Army begins to erect vision-obscuring fences around their camps. Behind these fences George W. Bush can plan World War III completely without control, how can this fit together with video supervisal of the civil people? Do you not think that people should start to install webcams on adjacent buildings and trees??

Lockers, business carts and everything else that can be stolen are accesible only with a security. In a society which is based more and more on electronic cash you are always forced to carry some spare change. The majority gets punished for the deeds of a few evil persons.

Even better: Recently in the supermarket - devices which jam the wheels of business carts when you try to leave the building. No more old ladies which can bring their purchases to their car! It is amazing what we can accept.

Movies in TV can hardly be seen without TV logos or advertisement blocks. On the other hand, commercial versions are often intentionally held back by the manufacturers. Why no free copying for a fee?

Another new annoyance: Some movie theaters begin to tell people not to bring their handbags into their rooms. I pay good money to see a movie without ads in the middle and I don't give away my satchel to anybody! Other theaters have installed video cameras in their rooms. Exactly my idea of fun...

A friend of sport events or concerts has to bear unworthy body visitations, not even a can of coke can be drunk. Only because a few hooligans cannot behave theirselves. Instead of attacking the root of all evil, the life quality of all is reduced.

And not to forget: Many churches and other temples have been closed for the believer for quiet prayers except for some special occasions...

Websites about Freedom and Censoring in the Web: Blue Ribbon Campaign (On-Line Demonstrations, german site) (The Thinkers, german site)

Party for more humanity? How I would imagine a party with sense...

Art, Science - you seem to have paid a fairly high price for your happiness," said the Savage, when they were alone. "Anything else?"

"Well, religion, of course," replied the Controller. "There used to be something called God–before the Nine Years' War. But I was forgetting; you know all about God, I suppose."

"Well -" The Savage hesitated. He would have liked to say something about solitude, about night, about the mesa lying pale under the moon, about the precipice, the plunge into shadowy darkness, about death. He would have liked to speak; but there were no words. Not even in Shakespeare.

The Controller, meanwhile, had crossed to the other side of the room and was unlocking a large safe set into the wall between the bookshelves. The heavy door swung open. Rummaging in the darkness within, "It's a subject," he said, "that has always had a great interest for me." He pulled out a thick black volume. "You've never read this, for example."

The Savage took it. "The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments," he read aloud from the title-page.

"Nor this." It was a small book and had lost its cover.

"The Imitation of Christ."

"Nor this." He handed out another volume.

"The Varieties of Religious Experience. By William James."

"And I've got plenty more," Mustapha Mond continued, resuming his seat. "A whole collection of pornographic old books. God in the safe and Ford on the shelves." He pointed with a laugh to his avowed library - to the shelves of books, the rack full of reading-machine bobbins and sound-track rolls.

"But if you know about God, why don't you tell them?" asked the Savage indignantly. "Why don't you give them these books about God?"

"For the same reason as we don't give them "Othello": they're old; they're about God hundreds of years ago. Not about God now."

"But God doesn't change."

"Men do, though."

Aldous Huxley, "Brave New World"

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