Whistleblowing and Censorship
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.