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I believe that my experience is relevant to this. I too remember the events on that day in China, however, I believe that if we do not defend liberty, China of that era, shall become a reality for this era here. Wil, I was recently banned from a usa based website (trekspace) for having an opinion. I am an artist designer, one who created an interesting cpu graphics program. It has not sold as well as i would have liked, however, it is just a hobby of mine to dabble in such things. i come from a family of academics and show business people. My brother has worked with Patrick before in a guest position on a production. Sadly none of this was known to the people on Trek space. A member of that site asked me in my blog, one in which I only had 3 post so far. She asked me about how there has been a decline in people's interest and respect for the arts. She also related this to gene's vision for a future in which humanity prospered as a result of creative cultivation as opposed to stagnation. As a writer Wil I know that you are well aware of how opinions can influence people. And I know that you have probrobly had your share of harsh critics over the years as well as people who agreed with you too. Its all about communication and constructive criticism, dialog and debate. How all of this relates to the Chinese protest is that, I have seen in the usa a growing trend of intolerance to opinion. Where people are reactionary and lash out emotionally when they feel that another person does not share their views. The commentary I made in my blog was nothing short of mild debate about the importance of preserving art and the individual's right to self produce materials that reflect an individual perspective on life and art and music. I even quoted Gene a few times and went back to his belief that diversity was essential to the well being and evolution and preservation of culture. However, as it may be, despite my discussion with the woman who was indeed agreeing with my opinion. The moderator of that site 'Borg Jen', attacked me with an ugly post suggesting that my commentary was a result of my level of disgruntlement over the fact that my star trek influenced graphics program has not sold (yet). (I have only had it out less than 2 weeks by the way) When I replied to her constructively and expressed to her that she was behaiving immaturely and missed the point of my commentary completely, yet choosing to focus on the first sentence of my paragraph. In which I said that my program had not sold. She lashed out again and banned me from the site completely. Realize that I started to trouble, nor did I pick fights or present anything that could be considered derogatory. Anyhow, my point is that, this is where it all begins. When you idiotic, immature people in positions power. They can not help but to use that power to subdue opinion. China's system began somewhere too. And as you have a total and complete breakdown in communication, education, diversity to an extent. And a lack of appreciation and cultivation of the arts in a way in which the diversity of the arts is presented. Where every one has a voice and a wide variety of opinions and perspectives are presented. You then have sort of a degeneration. You have a singular sort of culture where anything that is not endorsed by the corporation or in the case of China, the 'state', becomes suspect. And you have people who are readily available to act out their need to control and serve a system of repression and oppression. It is happening here in America. Slowly but surely . it is in these small instances of a greater fabric is being sewn. We too could one day wake up to a USA where unpopular opinion or opinion in general is outlawed. And the enforcer will be people like that moderator. So willingly ready to ban and censor anything that they personally disagree with. If even that. Jealousy runs hard in people's hearts these days and the end result of jealousy is hate. As an actor Wil I know that you have come across many haters in your career who have disliked you because you worked hard and obtained your goals. However in the 80's such could be seen as a fact of life. However, now, it is a reaction to anything that is different. Or unique. Such things are the building blocks of future conflict. As my dad used to say, there would come a time when there would be a series of Mini Hitlers. Technology though it offers individuals the power to free their minds, it too has the power to give a nothing the power to dictate too. The spread of hate and oppression comes over the net too. For good or for evil. It is up to humanity to decide which way. Though i nthe case of Trek Space, they are certainly bent on control. it is quite sad because it goes against everything that Gene stood for. he certainly seemed like a man of ideas. No matter popular or unpopular. I think that listening to alternative opinions or viewing alternative forms of art truly for him was the key to the growth of everyone. And whay shy away from debate, even if some things make us uncomfortable. It is that maturity to engage those things that may not make us feel safe or secure that opens the door for genuine discussion. thought and opinion can not be placed into a box and locked away. With only a screen to allow for those ideas that make people feel safe. What are we becoming? The lessons of China should influence us all. To be weary of just how easily that sort of change can come to pass. And how easy it is for society to fall into the grip of oppression. Please be well my friend. I greatly appreciated your characters in film and tv man.
Toggle Commented Jun 17, 2009 on twenty years ago... at WWdN: In Exile
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