Importance of Free Speech

by Ryan on February 22, 2007

in Culture,Politics

An Egyptian man was arrested and sentenced to four years in prison for writing critical remarks about Islam and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.  Many rights groups and others are up-in-arms over this because the Internet was commonly perceived in the Arab world as the last (or for some first)  place where free speech could reign.  Apparently not.

Tolerance of divergent, non-conformist opinions is rare in the Muslim world, so this story does not come as a huge shock to me, but it highlights the underlying frustrations many in the Arab world have about:

  • their leaders (who don’t ever seem to leave),
  • their religion (which has perceptually been hijacked by radical extremists), and
  • their stake in their own quality of life, which because of the Internet seems meager next to the outside and developed world.

The importance of free speech in the Arab world is becoming more and more important as time goes on and, through the Internet, our Muslim friends can see what else the world has to offer outside their highly repressive, dogmatic, poor lives. Maybe their leaders are seeing that too.

Leave a Comment

You can use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Previous post:

Next post: