Whistleblowing and Censorship

Daring to expose what is going on beneath the surface, and paying the penalty.

Daring to expose what is going on beneath the surface, and paying the penalty.

There is a lot of unrest in the world, but what is behind all of this unrest? As we read the paper or watch the news on TV, there is a sense of doom. Yet mixed in with these messages of darkness are other messages subtle messages that want us to relax, to not worry.

We know about ISIS, we know about bad people who run around emptying guns killing innocents. So, why are we so accepting of these things, especially when the enemy is often our own society, our culture, our governments, our military? Of course, one has to listen to the messages that come out of our media, our vested interests. Marshall McLuan wrote in 1964, that the “medium is the message.” How we get our messages, how they are wrapped up, influences our understanding of the message, how the medium shapes the understanding for other purposes. In advertising, we refer to subliminal messages that are purposely embedded though beneath the level of consciousness. The words say one thing, but another message is hidden in the medium (media). When someone, a whistleblower, warns us of what is hidden beneath the public information layer, our laws and our agencies leap into action to punish the whistleblower.

The image above features Laocoön and his sons. Laocoön was a Trojan (Greek) priest, a whistleblower from the times of the Trojan wars. In the image, he is seen being punished along with his two sons, being bitten by poisonous and constrictive snakes. Why? He tried to expose what the “Trojan Horse” was, what danger it contained. In modern times we have our own versions of Laocoön who risk everything. Some call these whistleblowers heroes, others call them enemies of the state bent on destroying everything we have achieved as a culture and civilisation.

Naturism, or nudism, faces the same issues of messages being hidden in the media that delivers the messages. Simple searches for wholesome, natural images that feature ordinary humans undressed return an overwhelming flood of pornography – the embedded message tells us that nudity, even natural, non-sexual nudity is in essence, pornography. Our society has worked hard to encode this in law, in attitudes, through fear advertising, and a host of other means. There is panic and offense taken even when there is no rational reason for fear or offense.

In response to my own questions of yesterday (thanks to those who weighed in via comments), I will attempt to not add my own misguided attempts at censorship to future posts.

2 thoughts on “Whistleblowing and Censorship

  1. The problem is that we need to get the media to stop treating a naked body and nudity as something to snicker or make “naughty” for ratings sake. The problem is that when the media doesn’t put than angle on a story, it becomes boring because being naked is just no big deal. Once we are naked, we do all of the same things that clothed people do. They have to sensationalize it to make it a story. Even in the plethora of nude yoga stories that are trendy to publish in women’s magazines add that little bit of taboo to catch readers. Statements like, “I looked up and saw all of these butts and genitals while in downward dog.” are meant to add that extra sizzle to the story. Every so often a media outlet will publish a good story like the one a local TV channel did over a year ago about how more people are taking nakations. They didn’t treat nudity like a giggling 6 year old would and they interviewed intelligent, well-spoken vacationers that represented naturism in a positive and wholesome light. I was shocked and impressed by their report.

    We need to look at ourselves as well. Do you see everyday people or public figures other than celebrities coming out in support of our cause? Not typically, we see the kooky and fringe types reported which give our cause a bad reputation. I will not name the one person that comes to mind first. Most of us are everyday people with typical careers that quietly and peacefully enjoy being nude. We do it when and where we can. We don’t come out in the local media in support of local nude recreation for fear of a stigma being attached to us. There are a few bold advocated that are more public but they are few and far between. Even me, I hide behind a pseudonym even though I don’t hide my enjoyment if asked or the topic arises. I just prefer to avoid any confusion in my professional career should people search for me on line. Although as I get older I become less concerned about people finding out.

    We need more well spoken public advocates for naturism and nudity. We need out Tim Cook in the corporate world so we can reveal ourselves so to speak. Only when this happens can we dispel the stereotypes and misconceptions around what is normal and natural. I find it very perplexing that in this day with accepted gay unions, transgenderism, and legal marijuana that wholesome nudity is still not accepted by society.

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