Internet Censorship Essay

994 Words4 Pages
All I wanted to do was shop for new shoes online, but instead I was staring at a webpage packed with lewd photographs. I was only 14. I certainly was not looking to be directed to such a vulgar website; however, much to my dismay, I had simply mistyped the URL to a popular sporting goods store and found myself face-to-face with something I was much too young to see. Unfortunately, this happens all too often. A staggering amount of young children are accessing pornographic material online, whether they want to or not. In this day in age where just about everything is regulated in one fashion or another, many are calling for the censorship of Internet pornography. While some say it is a necessity when it comes to the industry, others…show more content…
This is the foundation of the conservative debate in favor of censorship. Many believe that it is government’s role to protect us from harm (West). As long as the government is protecting the well being of society, censorship of Internet pornography appears to be a legitimate means to an end. It would seem to many that this is a solid foundation for their argument. So, following this lead, the Communications Decency Act of 1996 was imposed, a law “making it a crime to display ‘indecent’ material on-line” (Net Mania). This law would essentially put measures in place to protect individuals from unwanted pornographic encounters online. Problem solved, right? Wrong.
Just a short time later this very law was overturned, and to that I say thank goodness. My stance on censorship of the Internet may surprise some, considering my all too graphic teenage experience with the Internet. However, I am a firm believer in the First Amendment. The Communications Decency Act of 1996 was an honest attempt at a solution. Unfortunately, it was also unlawful. Which, therein, lays the basis for the liberal argument against censorship. Trying to censor Internet pornography would be a clear violation of our rights under the First Amendment, namely, freedom of speech. Not only that, but I see very little need for government intervention at all. “Legal moralism” is a nice concept, don’t

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