Ray Bradbury novel Fahrenheit 451 depicts the American society in the future. Bradbury saw people who were self gratifying and critical thinkers. Bradbury main character is Montag who is a fireman also known as a book burner. Fahrenheit 451 is the temperature at which paper ignites. Bradbury believed that book paper catches fire at four hundred and fifty one degrees Fahrenheit. The firemen burn the books for the good of humanity. This novel critiques the American society in the cold war era and was all about government censorship. The book is fictional and as it has been made many times, science fiction is not fiction about other worlds, times or races but it has been seen as fiction that remarks and critiques our world at this time and this race. The government in the story hires Montag and other firemen so that they can burn unauthorized books so that it can control what people think and know.The same case applies in modern day government in which it attempts to control people using indirect strategies of diverting people attention from the real reason for banning a certain issue.
Varied views of Obama on amendment record
When Obama was Illinois senator and the U.S. senate his speeches showed that he had diverse standpoints on issues that were related to the first amendment. This shows that he was attempting some censorship so as to gain peoples favor. He didn’t want to take one standpoint. Most people noted this and as Montag in page seven when he talks about the things they don’t notice and they know about but don’t know to show that they were aware of what their government was attempting to do. Senator Obama was attempting censorship since he had know how in constitutional matters because he was a associate professor at Chicago University and focused on this. He had also been an attorney where he took proceedings in court cases especially in the voting rights and employment area. Obama was attempting to censor his religious views for the sake of his presidential candidacy.He is attempting to control people indirectly just like the government in the story did. The presidential candidate called for separation of church and the state while he supported public officials who expressed their religious beliefs. He contradicted his views when he said that religion was not necessary for morality and he also added that secularists asking believers to abandon their religion when entering the public square was wrong. Obama also spoke of the crucial roles that religious people played in establishing the First Amendments religious freedom. He also talked of how he was going to involve religious groups in government programs for fighting poverty. He failed to paint a clear picture of his stand because he wanted to control people to vote for him so that after he became president he would impose his own religious rules.Though he supported separation of the church and the state he remarked that the challenges that the government faced were too big for the government to solve alone. He sought to introduce a better version of the program that George Bush had established and alter its name. His program would persuade religious charities which were large to enlighten small one in the community. He also contradicted himself since in his campaign sheet since he was to allow charities that were religious and which got national finances to reflect on religion while employing people though he did not accept the use of religious tests for those who were receiving aid. This would be termed as ambitious censorship and as Ledeen (2010) proposed that the public was challenging ambitious censorship but it would work quite well with employees of the government. He also argued that restrictive speech code for civil servants and official would be very effective since those who opposed would be fired or demoted.
Government leaders have been known to hide their true colors when they want favor from the public yet when they get to leadership positions they do exactly opposite of what they had promised to do. In the novel Clarisse asks Montag whether he knew that billboards on the highway were only twenty five feet wide but with jet cars rushing faster they had to build modern ones. This shows how people change and realize that their leaders are just hiding their true identities. It also signifies how far they have come as a result of modernization which has made things to change. Obama condemned provocative comments by Reverend Wright who laid the blame of September 11 attacks on the country for spreading terrorism. Obama was censoring his religious views so as to gain favor from people and all these actions were just an act even condemning Pastor Wright. Yet some people are not aware of this as the people were in Montag story.
Obama’s campaign also cancelled a television station access to Obama and Biden
The campaign called off the station meeting with Biden’s wife after Barbara West, a WFTV anchor asked Biden’s about how Obama intended to spread the wealth. She also asked Biden about his earlier remarks about Obama being evaluated upon attaining the presidential seat by global disasters. Obama’s campaign cancelled the meeting because they did not want to answer questions regarding distribution of wealth. This was attempted censorship of information and the freedom of press. The communication director told Herald that there was no time for them to interview the president until the election and their cancellation was not open to discussion.
WFTV news director Jordan reported that Joe Biden’s was not happy with the questions. Reporters from various newspaper were gotten rid of from Obama’s campaign because they approved John McCain. This showed censorship of freedom press. Executive Editor of Washington Times John Solomon said that they had spent so much money covering Obama’s campaign yet they had been seen as equivalent to redistribution of wealth. The Obama team covered this by saying that they had gotten rid of the reports because of the issue of space and that it had nothing to do with endorsements. Another instant which showed censorship of the media was when Obama asked the Justice Department to prevent a news station from airing and connecting him to William Ayers.
The department was also requested by Bob Bauer to investigate the advert sponsor, the person who funded the project and the American Issues Project. The advert enquired the link between Ayers and Obama. Ayer was a radical who accepted that he was accountable for the bombings in the U.S. in the 1960s at the Pentagon and the Capitol. Obama warned Television Stations managers about airing the advert and most stations did exactly that. The Obama team used threats and intimidations to ruin the First Amendment as a result of lack of an argument based on good points. When he was a senator in Illinois, Obama supported freedom of information and his state was the first state to enact a bill of such kind yet when he was campaigning he undermined this same freedom. Obama also endorsed a law for shielding journalist and he also said that this raised the issue of national freedom and their different liberties when they had true rivals and conflicts. This shows that he did not have full confidence in the press and thus was bound to censor it in the future.
Obama had also expressed revulsion for certain forms of speech
He argued that most of the people had become complicit and relaxed towards offensive things. He argued that just because someone could say something, it did not mean that they should say something. He was saying this in regard to the way rappers called women, he argued that the rappers were degrading the sisters and that he was not moved. He also spoke on indecency on television. Since then he has sought to regulate indecency in the media. First Amendment allows freedom of cultural values and Obama regulating sex and violence on T.V. is just because he wants to impede on freedom of press indirectly. All these measures or censorship are just an attempt to control people’s thoughts and behaviors just like in the novel. Such censorship limits what people can or cannot do and leaders make their followers to follow what they see as good behavior and control media press to air what they want. They also manipulate such communication to portray to the media what they want. The censorship tends to oppress people and instills fear in them to voice their own opinions. Suppressing the media is an attempt to exercise control over people access to information or knowledge. The media opposed this and would not follow what they were told. For instance when Obama told various T.V. station not to air the story about him and Ayers, some went ahead and aired the story.This shows rebellion which may put some of them in danger because of opposing the ruler. Just as Montag questions his life, his principles and own perception of happiness when he meets Clarisse the media personnel’s and the rest of the people do the same. Legislations have also been put in place to protect the media. Adler (2008) argued that this novel is very relevant in modern day and as proved by this essay it is since just like Montag government is typical of modern day governments.