I don’t know what freedom of speech is anymore. I really don’t. I know people say that phrase like it’s a pillar of democracy, but its said in such a positive tone and I don’t know what that sounds like anymore. And this comes after several years of studying politics. And I kid you not, I wrote this post twice. The first time was a lengthy lecture on freedom of speech that involved cameos by Plato, John Stuart Mill, Thomas Jefferson and what I can only assume was a drunk Shakespeare. The second time was an attempt to shorten the first one by drawing diagrams, most of which would be considered universally obscene. And in between lengthy paragraphs on moral absolutism and moral relativism, here I am on my third attempt at writing a post on a topic that is the personification of, well, much ado about nothing.
To top it off, I hate lectures.
So instead of an in depth analysis about freedoms or lack there of, instead of crying havoc and letting loose the dogs of war, I’ll simply spare everyone the tall tales and jump right to the resolution: the solutions to our current dilemma. Please read them all through and pick the one you feel is the most applicable.
Solution #1: Rename Jordan Blogs to something more personal like “Khaled’s World” or “Bakkouz’s Galaxy”.
Pros: Jordan Blogs is too universal a name. It makes me feel on some subconscious level that I am entitled to its membership based solely on my citizenship. If it was someone’s personal agreggator of Jordanian blog no one would care if they were removed.
Solution #2: If a name change is out of the question how about making the site into an NGO and binding it to international law.
Pros: Injustices committed against bloggers can be put to trial and freedom of speech can be maintained.
Cons: May be tricky as bloggers and/or administrators of Jordan Blogs may end up seeing the inside of a cell at the Hague. That being said, most of international law hasn’t been written yet so there are plenty of loopholes and gaps our lawyers can have fun with at $600 an hour.
Solution #3: No more Jordanian aggregators.
Solution #4: I take everyone out for ice cream.
Pros: Various flavors.
Cons: My wallet.
Solution #5: Design an intricate law system in relation to the internal operations of Jordan Blogs. A framework is designed as a guide to what has crossed the lines of freedom of speech and/or freedom of expression. A vote is taken and the majority is declared. Order is restored in the kingdom and the framework is upheld. Disgruntled bloggers can ask to be removed from the aggregator.
Pros: Seems fair.
Cons: Not as fun as ice cream.
Solution #6: Implement the Sharia law.
Pros: Involves new and creative fatwas! Yay!
Cons: May involve indiscriminate beheadings. Still not as fun as ice cream.
Now all this being said allow me to add this brief personal comment: I really don’t care. I don’t hear the walls of freedom of speech crumbling. I have my own viewpoints and my own perspectives on what I consider criticism and what I consider slander, and what I consider art and what I consider pornography. An aggregator at the end of the day is a podium that is maintained by several individuals who I would like to think also know the difference between art and pornography, which is why I can sleep at night knowing that a picture of Michelangelo’s David will not be censored nor my blog banned. That being said I really do think the atmosphere Jordan Blogs wishes to preserve should be based on a set of agreeable guidelines and publicly published for all member bloggers to see.
Another reason I don’t care (do not be fooled by the time and energy I’ve spent on this particular post that might suggest otherwise) is that I always try to be aware of going off the deep end. I like Star Trek. I’m a fan. But I draw the line at debating whether Captain Kirk could kick Captain Picard’s ass or what Romulan I would like to see coupled with a Cardassian the most, and why.