This proposal disturbs me for a few reasons: Some of us use pseudonyms or resort to anonymity to lessen the repercussions of having someone who finds our opinions or ideas offensive. Whether it is a governmental agency or, as we have here in Utah, ordinary citizens who will proverbially "move Heaven and Earth" to find you if they don't like what you said. I speak from the expensive experience of a brick with a copy of The Book of Mormon (the openig salvo of several months of harrassment) thrown through my front window because I stupidly sent a letter to the Salt Lake Tribune in 2008 criticizing the LDS church's spending over two million dollars in California campaigning for Proposition 8 (if you've been in a cave studying and/or finding a way to preserve Neolithic wall paintngs for future generations, it was the one repealing the rights of gays to marry) when there were actually worthy uses of that much money here in the state. There were food banks facing the posibity of having to shut down because they couldn't get enough donations to remain open, and two voulunteer-run "Meals on Wheels"-type programs that would have to cut their deliveries to twice a week insted of the three-to-five (depending on the recipient's ablity to afford and prepare meals and care for other needs. Assisting local community groups in avoiding starving-out grandma and grandpa is, to me, a more donaton-worthy cause than something going on in California.
Because of my letter, some annoyed and diligent individual(s) hunted me down by my former name (the situation eventually became so bad that my husband and I had to legally change our names, get a court order to delete our e-mail accounts [our former internet provider was quite adamant that we keep them], and finally move to stop the vandalism, threatening telephone calls, e-mails, and despite the post office's best efforts, snail mail threats [can anyone say "fedeal offense to send threats via mail."? I KNEW this crowd probably could], before it finally ended.
I'm willing to bet my life this wasn't the work of the so-called "Mormon Mafia" - read "Unarmed Mall Cops who request certain people or groups get off church-owned property", just one dedicated fanatic and their friends/followers. We aren't the only people who've had, shall I say "people of dissenting opinions"? Spend time, gasoline, stamps, and other resourrces (in one far more disturbing case, ammo) to express their anger at someone's opnion. As the Trib will not publish letters that are obviously "hate speech" or use racist, sexist, or other forms of abuse, I'm prety sure my suggestion that anyone or any group with "extra money" to donate for a cause start by looking at UTAH's needs first wasn't some semicoherent anti-LDS rant.
Yet my inablity to save a lot of time and money on a new front window, replacing rosebushes, fruit trees, and re-seeding the lawn from someone doing donuts on it in a maroon mini van simply because anyone can call the local papers and find out who submitted the "Name Withheld by Request" letter that's stirred their ire.
I believe Denmark's proposal could lead to anything from random digruntled maniacs like we had, to someone finding a former lover and killing them for leaving, to the worst-case-scenario of political dissenters suddenly either disappearing or having fatal accidnts. The press could be severely curailed in their reportage of any facts that don't "toe the company line" that they're being allowed to report...
For some reason I cannot find, my mind keeps flashing bsck to a horrific event caught on a cell phone and sent out of Iran, quick before all outside internet and cellular communications were shut off by a government grown too powerful via measures slowly taken that eventually landed the people under the rule of a megalomaniac and his "religious leader" friend.
She was a music student, participating in a peaceful protest against her country's rigged election. Her name was Neda Agha-Soltan, and the surprised look on her face as she died is haunting. I don't want to see Denmark's citizens allow themselves to be pursuaded by fear that they end up living out a similar nightmare.
A chilling reminder of how even the smallest things, lost for whatever reason, can come back and bite you in the ass.
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