Ever since the Leveson Inquiry report has been made available, politicians, mainly the Tories, have all just thought about protecting the press, as if to say the press were the victims in all this. It is the real victims needing protection. They need justice for being notoriously targeted by the Press for their own malicious gain.
The Leveson report’s recommendations, if anything, is kind to the law makers, it is not saying that the press will be regulated by the state it is simply saying that there should be an independent body to oversee complaints made against the press. No one sees what the hacking victims are going through, that’s why people fail to understand the importance of implementing Lord Leveson’s recommendations and showing that we really do care about the victims of the Hacking scandal and justice being done.
I believe that freedom is free, but the moment you abuse your position in any given circumstances you should be stripped of that freedom. After all we do this to criminals, why not the press? Is it because it is such a large establishment? Or is it really because the fear of the press rebellion against the political establishment. Whatever it is, we shouldn’t have double standards with criminals and the freedom of the press. If criminals loose their civil liberties, why can’t the press loose its freedom? The press has committed a criminal act, it would only be criminal not to sanction the press.
Everyone wants freedom of press, it perfects democracy. But when the press becomes intrusive into people’s life, does it really make our nation more democratic? To the extent where it causes serious emotional distress and makes people suffer until unable to cope, tell me, is that Democracy? A survey for the Hacked Off campaign by You Gov, just shows how strong the feelings are for the press to be regulated by an independent body. ‘71% disagree that they can trust newspaper editors to ensure their journalists act in the public interest’. 71%, clearly it is within the public interest to implement the recommendations by Lord Leveson. Clearly the Tories are on the wrong side of the boat, even their coalition partners the Liberal Democrats strongly disagree with the Prime Minister, with the Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, providing his own statement to the House of Commons last Thursday. The people in Parliament are supposed to be representative of the general public, but the Tories in parliament go against the wishes of the general public, it’s not just the victims. How does that make them a legitimate democratic government? Remember what Abraham Lincoln once said about democracy “Democracy is the government of the people, by the people, for the people” but the politicians that are pro-press freedom aren’t creating democracy when they refuse to listen to the people. All they want is the soft recommendations by Lord Leveson to be implemented.
It is here where we have to be altruistic and not think of ourselves but think of the people that have suffered under the press’s abuse of its position over the past few years. Even though it may all be out in the open, the emotional pain and distress won’t go away for the victims. I wasn’t a victim of the Hacking Scandal but my thoughts are with them. As no one would like to be in the position that they are now, I could honestly say I wouldn’t wish that hurt on my worst enemy. It is in the coming weeks that we will see if anything will be done for the injustices of the press.
By Daniel Reuel