Originally created 06/02/06

Sometimes censorship is necessary



Letter writer Jay B. Collett has apparently forgotten some other "cornerstones of our great country" ("You call this national security?" May 30).

Imagine what irreparable damage would have occurred to the Allied cause during World War II if a free press had known about and blabbed the information that resulted from the Enigma decipherments. We would no longer have known about the plans, capabilities and deployment of Axis forces, because they would have changed their codes. And censorship in wartime often is an acceptable necessity.

With freedom comes responsibility. If irresponsible and foolish people endanger national security by publishing that which should be kept secret, they need to be prosecuted. It would be the attorney general's constitutional duty as part of the executive branch to see that such persons are charged, and up to the courts to decide guilt or innocence, just as in all other treasonous offenses. That is also in the Constitution.

Classification and censorship are legal procedures that help keep people from making tragic mistakes because of their ignorance of the whole situation.

Daniel Hahn, Dearing



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 JAY B. COLLETT   DANIEL HAHN   LETTER WRITER   ATTORNEY GENERAL