The Role Of Censorship is to Protect Society Whilst not Interfering with Human Liberty

I believe that this is a very accurate description of censorship. However, it is very tricky to prevent someone from viewing something that is not allowed for them, but is still there. E.g. a 14 year old boy, watching a cert. 18 movie.

In our modern day society, things such as movies, books, TV etc. have become less and less censored. 10 or so years ago, a film called ‘Pale Rider’ was release. It features Clint Eastwood, and he shot some men. There was hardly any blood, and there was hardly and death. This was rated an 18. A few weeks ago, a film was released called ’40 Days of Night.’ This was an all out vampire gore film. There was blood and death, and lots of it. It was rated a 15. Also, recently they released the new 12A rating, which meant that anyone could go and see it, even if they were under 12, as long as the were accompanied by an adult. To me this just defeats the whole point of censoring this movie, as it doesn’t restrict anyone. Not really.

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The role of the censorship office is to protect the younger, more ‘mouldable’ minds, but where can one draw the line. Many people would argue that censorship of media has become far to relaxed.

Children are getting more violent, and some TV shows promote fighting. The very popular ‘Power-Rangers’ is all about a group of teenagers who go around beating up ‘bad guys’. I know for certain that young kids who are around 5 or 6 actually start fighting, declaring that the other is a ‘baddy’, and properly punching them and kicking them. The shocking thing is, ‘Power-Rangers’ is specifically aimed at this prime age. To take this to the extremes, there was a story on the news very recently.

Two other kids, aged between 10 and 12 killed a young toddler, called Jamie Bulger. Without a doubt, what these two boys did was twisted and a normal person would not do it, but it came out that at one of the boy’s houses, a ‘Child’s Play’ film was found. This is a film about a doll that comes to life and murders lots of people. Could the mindless violence have triggered an urge in their minds to kill Jamie? The problem is, if an adult buys a movie, it is near impossible to prevent the child from watching it at home. But even if they had seen it, who is to say that is what triggered them to kill this boy? I’m sure millions of children have seen this film. How many of them have killed another child. Two out of one million. I myself have seen that movie when I was 13. Did I throw bricks at a small child and kill him? I think not.

Also, it is claimed that violent games, such as ‘Grand Theft Auto’ leads to violent behaviour, as while playing this game, you get to kill anyone you like, however you like. Most, if not all kids who own a console have violent games, and they are no more violent than the last generation. When they were young, most of them actually killed an animal. My uncle claimed that he used to kill squirrels with his BB gun. That is taking an actual life. Isn’t that worse than killing a computer created figure, which will just disappear when it turns around the corner? It will have no family, no chance of a family, not feelings. The squirrel on the other hand would. It feels. It probably has a family, or will have a family.

Nowadays, the Internet is readily available to anyone of any age, as most houses have a computer in the house. This is very useful for the spread of information, but it can also be used to spread hatred and racism or paedophilic images of young children. Also, as this information is barely censored and as google is so easy to use and very basic, anyone can access these forms of media or websites. Would this lead to more people feeling the same way, or taking action?

‘Freedom of Speech’ has long been an important part of British Society, so why can’t we allow freedom of viewing? Is it not the same? You can influence someone as much with words as you can with images. If anything, you can deter someone, as they think ‘Oh yeah I can kill someone’ but then seeing the image of blood or a decapitated body makes them feel nauseous, and they are deterred from committing the violent act.

To conclude my essay, Censorship, despite the fact that not all people are affected by what occurs on the screen, needs to be in place, as there are some unstable people, but not as strictly. I believe that we should remove the certificates over 16, so it should be up to them do decide where their ‘line’ is, as they always know themselves better than people who work in an office somewhere, miles away. I believe it should be this age, as that is the age that someone is allowed to live on their own legally.

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