A big part of that is because I was born, raised, and continue to be an American. And we decided first and foremost on the bill of rights was about keeping the government from censoring its own people.
Combined with that is a deeply ingrained cultural respect for property rights, in that whoever's owning and operating a given area or establishment has very broad powers of determining what is said in their own domain.
To make it simple, American property rights run on, "Driver picks the music, shotgun shuts his cakehole."
But you don't need a government to be a censor. You just need a government to run afoul of the first amendment.
Websters calls censoring "suppression or deleting of anything found objectionable"
But running my mind through a Pratchett filter, to put censorship on the same level as "sin is where you treat people as things?"
In that case, censorship is when not watching or reading it yourself isn't enough anymore. It's when you take up the arrogance to decide nobody else should see it either.
Less a single sin and more of a spectrum. On the heavy end is causing a government to ban works by force of law. On the light end is penny-ante shit like hiding an objectionable book in another part of the library to make it harder for someone else to find it.
Being a snotty little bitch about death of the author is somewhere in the middle.
None of this is new. The ratings systems we've had for movies for decades now is the result of the movie industry deciding to censor themselves before the government stepped in and did it for them.
If you were a teenage horror movie fan in the 90's, you got to see all the arbitrary bullshit that entailed. Say "fuck" more than once and it's an automatic "R." Only so many thrusts in a sex scene. Gay sex was more objectionable than straight. Women receiving pleasure was more objectionable than men doing the same. Cutting a female breast off was less objectionable than kissing one. The list goes on.
Was this censorship? Yes.
Studio contracts by that point obligated directors to deliver a finished cut of a given film with a certain rating.
Even worse, the ratings board wouldn't spit out what they found objectionable. They'd just say "Here's the rating. Want a lower one? Fix it. No, we won't tell you specifics. Figure it out."
Not a government official to be seen. And a couple steps removed "We didn't tell them what to cut. We're not censors!"
But censorship all the same.
Now we've just got a lot more people saying. And the platforms have stepped up.
And a whole lot of people deciding they don't like something, so nobody else can see it too.
And every now and then, someone in power agrees.
I don't listen to Joe Rogan, but I can see why he's pissing people off. He's letting people you disagree with talk. And it's been three years of fuckery and we're all looking for someone to blame for why it's not back to normal again and here he is, letting people proven wrong in your own heads have their say.
Meanwhile Joe's eating CNN's lunch money. Lemme emphasize that. CNN. THE face of TV news, is getting their ass handed to them in the ratings by a podcaster.
CNN would shed no tears if Joe's show went away.
Did I mention government? The white house press secretary said "Something should be done" in regards to Rogan yesterday.
Pratchett never went head-on against censorship, but his book The Truth addressed both deplatforming (The Engraver's and Printer's Guild) and misinformation (Dibbler, of course). His go-to Tyrant, Lord Vetinari, seemed to regard censorship as a waste of time. Something to do when you either know your own position is a lie to begin with, or fear your opposition is a good enough argument to win.
I objected to the ban on Maus because it's the deep end of censorship, using the clumsy and heavy hand of the government. But in the end, the minds behind it are a mirror of those screaming about taking Rogan down. Because he's letting misinformation be heard.
Parents who have already been accused of being terrorists for having the audacity to want a say in how their children are educated might have an interest in disinformation being heard as well. Whether I agree with them on what counts as disinformation or not.
(Side note: I stopped giving a shit about Whoopi's opinions back when she claimed Polanski's actions weren't "rape-rape," whatever the fuck that's supposed to mean. But you'd think someone who's taken a Jewish stage name for a decades-long career would fucking know better. Oh well.)
Take care of yourselves out there,