The respected Reporters Without Borders has issued its annual report and ranking of press freedom. You might have some initial difficulty locating the United States . . . it is 27 points lower on the ranking due to the mistreatment of journalists in this country. You will find us just after Comoros and Taiwan and in the company of Argentina and Romania. In the recent column on “10 Reasons The U.S. Is No Longer The Land Of The Free,” I was not able due to space to include press freedoms and others. This report, however, should be a wake up call for civil libertarians.
The United States fell from 20th to 47th in the ranking.
The organization noted an increase rate of arrests of journalists around the world, including U.S. journalists during “Occupy” protests.
The nation at the top of the ranking of press freedom is Finland followed by Norway and Estonia, the Netherlands, and Austria.
The worst is Eritrea which just nudged out North Korea as the least free place on Earth for Journalists.
The most deadly place for journalists last year was Pakistan.
As discussed in the earlier column, we often treated the United States as obviously the most free nation of Earth despite objective standards that contradict those assumptions. The result is a type of collective delusion as our protections from government abuse and power fall. A free press is critical in those protections, as repeatedly stated by the Supreme Court. Most of the abuse by the government in the last decade were disclosed not by the Congress or the courts. They were disclosed through the free press. Perhaps at the next presidential debate we can get the candidates to pledge to fight to pass Comoros in this year’s competition.
Source: Daily Mail