this will be a short one.
just to let everyone here know peacekitten has been banned from huffington post without so much as a warning or a cautionary email. all i got was a lousy lightning bolt.
of course i am but one tiny fish in a pond that is filled with undeservedly banned posters. but what begins to happen when this sort of practice is accepted without a fight is the chilling of free speech. who is going to be willing to speak their mind, only to be silenced or punished in a childish manner? soon, the cumulative effect is that our right to speak freely without fear of recrimination is taken without so much as a whimper, and our own mindset changes so subtly over time that we don’t even realize we are now a faceless part of the crowd.
trying to excuse it because it is a “private” website is not good enough. it’s apologizing for hypocrisy, because it means that such a place is not willing to honor and stand for one of our most basic rights. such a place has no right to try and garner the benefits of the public, only to hide behind their privacy when they are too scared to do the right thing.
such things are really much more complex than simply shrugging one’s shoulders, ignoring it and moving on. eventually, those of us who will NOT conform will end up like the people at the end of “fahrenheit 451,” who have to essentially become the books they are no longer allowed to read by walking around reciting them from memory.
free speech. you either believe in it or you don’t.
it is really just that simple.