So apparently the plan to create a “Freedom Square” that hosted free speech in Amman has found its location. The Hashemite Yard in downtown Amman is going to be ‘transformed’ into a platform for freedom of speech.
Strange enough, when it comes to the kind of freedom of speech which really matters (i.e. freedom of press) we’ve been moving backwards. This Freedom Square is going to sadly be dissapointing. Professionals and intellectuals who abide in west Amman won’t go downtown to rant, and those who live in the downtown will be too afraid to do so. I’m also guessing you’ll need to get permission from some assigned authoritative body that will turn down half the people and monitor the other half. There are a million other scenarios but I’m guessing the end result will essentially be the same: a vacant lot.
They should do something about press laws first, and since reform in that arena isn’t coming anytime soon then I’d rather my tax money be used to plant some pretty flowers.
The most freedom of speech I have ever seen in Jordan has come in the form of Jordanian blogs. But even those waters are yet to be tested (hopefully they wont be)