The failing comforts of censorship

As many people have pointed out, Youtube has recently started becoming Youcan’t.

Want to produce a video that challenges the fidelity of the 2020 election? Sorry, denied.

Robin Schumacher
Courtesy of Robin Schumacher

Want to deliver information that disputes the COVID-19 information being put out by the CDC, even if you’re a team of very qualified medical professionals? No soup for you.

Odd, isn’t it, that the people who scream loudest about the “threat to our democracy” are many times the ones who work the hardest to undermine it.

And they do a good job. Those powering the Professional Outrage Industry can take credit for 88% of American universities restricting free speech in some form and helping push the tech giants and mainstream publications to shut down opinions they dislike. For example, USA Today now uses leftist college interns to weed out conservative voices.   

While suppression of opposing viewpoints has always been with us, there’s no question it’s intensified in the last few decades. What’s going on?

Stop making me uncomfortable

While the reasons people carry out censorship and suppression are varied, one overriding motive has to do with that fact that, for many, encountering information that opposes their opinion and worldview results in feelings of discomfort that are so strong they’ll do almost anything to make it stop.   

When Ariana Pekary resigned from her job as producer at MSNBC, she said: “I’ve even heard producers deny their role as journalists. A very capable senior producer once said: 'Our viewers don’t really consider us the news. They come to us for comfort.'”

However, unbeknownst to the person who does everything in their power to inoculate their life against opposing opinions, they end up creating an even more uncomfortable and fearful environment for themselves. Nathanael Blake comments on this when he writes: “The dissolution of the possibility of shared rational dialogue does not reduce wrath, but intensifies it. In the absence of a common standard or tradition of reasoning, moral arguments appear intractable…. Without appeals to a shared reason or authority, there remain only appeals to sentiment. This encourages intense displays of emotion because the force of an argument can only be supported by emotional intensity. Once appeals to sentiment are exhausted, what remains are anger and attempts at coercion.”

Stop making me uncomfortable, God

I’ve been involved in Christian apologetics for many years now and one thing I’ve noticed is that the underlying motivation in most all arguments against God is the need to stop the uncomfortable feelings that come from acknowledging that an absolute moral Creator exists. And because, as Thomas Aquinas said, “the contrary of a truth can never be demonstrated”, the only way to stop such truth from being presented is to censor and suppress it.

Like the Bible says, if you love darkness, you’re going to hate the light (John 3:19) and do your best to block it out.

God’s Old Testament prophets excelled at making people uncomfortable. When Jeremiah delivered his prophecies, he was beaten and silenced (Jer. 20:1-3). God complained to Isaiah about those who, “say to the seers, “See no more visions!” and to the prophets, “Give us no more visions of what is right! Tell us pleasant things, prophesy illusions” (Is. 30:10).  

The same was true in Amos and Micah’s day: “I also raised up prophets from among your children and Nazirites from among your youths. Is this not true, people of Israel?” declares the LORD. “But you made the Nazirites drink wine and commanded the prophets not to prophesy.” (Amos 2:11-12).

The Old Testament prophets lived everyday something Isaiah spoke about: “Truth is lacking, and one who turns aside from evil makes himself a prey” (Is. 59:15). 

Go to the New Testament and count how many times the religious leaders tried to shut Jesus up because of the moral pricks He inflicted on them. Paul wrote about how infuriated people get over the fact that God embeds knowledge of Himself into their soul so, they in turn, “suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them” (Rom. 1:18-19). 

It’s like one atheist who finally admitted that God was real and said, “I’ve become angry at God for not not existing”. 

Like many who run to their favorite lying mainstream media outlets for comfort, those wishing to make God go away also want “to have their ears tickled” so “they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance with their own desires, and they will turn their ears away from the truth” (2 Tim. 4:3-4).

This is why, in addition to censoring secular conservative content, Youtube also says “you can’t” when it comes to posting videos about God’s truth on certain moral issues. I’m betting it won’t be long before Youtube adopts the same stance as many communist countries where even the basic idea of God is censored.

So, don’t be surprised if a search for “God” on Youtube one day soon returns the message, “No results found”. 

Robin Schumacher is an accomplished software executive and Christian apologist who has written many articles, authored and contributed to several Christian books, appeared on nationally syndicated radio programs, and presented at apologetic events. He holds a BS in Business, Master's in Christian apologetics and a Ph.D. in New Testament. His latest book is, A Confident Faith: Winning people to Christ with the apologetics of the Apostle Paul.

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