Social Media Ruling
Seldom has contemporary history witnessed abuse as that has been inflicted on the word democracy.
In fact it has rarely been adopted as a regulator of governance and a mirror of the rule of the people.
Most dictatorships have introduced the magic word into the name of their countries. And on record most of human persecution, autocracy even massacres were carried out in the name of democracy. Granted no system, in practice, can boast 100 percent adherence to its principles. However, perception is relative. The Arab ruling class hates the expression altogether as an imperialist plot. The basics of democracy, if we move from government systems, is of course, freedom of speech. Lebanon, for example, that prided itself with being an oasis of freedom has for the past few years started to tighten the screws on the media in general and in the absence of modern laws that govern freedom of expression with the spread of new technology it has gotten worse. The tragedy is that the authorities are trying to muzzle the dynamic and vibrant media and all the ensuing advances, thanks to technology, through archaic laws that in fact make control of social media a mission impossible.
Lately such measures have reached an alarming level that threatens the basic right and duty of freedom of expression that the Lebanese have maintained right through wars, occupation and the plethora of upheavals. It’s time for a genuine effort for all media sectors to give this issue the importance it deserves and launch a united front to confront the looming oppressive measures. Authorities are attacking freedom of the press in Lebanon on exaggerated questionable allegations and getting away with it in the absence of a bold stand by the media.
The media should relinquish all differences and treat this danger as a collective punishment aimed at bringing any dissent to a standstill. Time is running out, and if we don’t take the bull by the horns immediately, the regime, and any regime, for that matter, will be celebrating with fire works.
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