The word “America” used to bring up such positive ideas as “the American dream” or “freedom” or “patriotism”. Yet perhaps because of our freedoms, America is being associated with low-class and utterly degrading acts of humanity. Everyone has heard of them. Because of our freedom of petition, we are currently petitioning the government to “arrest Dick Cheney and George W. Bush for crimes against humanity.” (Check out the currently open petitions here at https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petitions.) Because of our freedom of speech, we allow Kim Kardashian to give an awards speech (I sincerely doubt that anyone who names his/her daughter North with a last name like West should be allowed to speak. That’s a minor form of child cruelty.) Because of our freedom of expression, we allow flags to be burned and people to smear themselves with feces and call it art. But now, shots have been fired, and suddenly, one freedom has come under attack: the freedom of the press.
For anyone caught unawares, the recent movie, The Interview, is currently ensconced in controversy. First, let me give you some background. The film is centered around two bumbling idiots, who are hired by the FBI to kill Kim Jong Un, the current leader of North Korea. Starring Seth Rogen and James Franco, there is no doubt that this was meant to simply be just another American comedy, filled to the brim with the usual crass, crude, and senseless dialogue. The whole plot even, was simply a part of the one-upmanship that comes with the show business. With comedy, nothing is funnier than the utterly absurd. The wackier, the evermore impossible, is what makes us laugh. However, America has taken this movie to a whole new level.
Since its conception, the movie has faced some serious backlash. An anonymous hacker group has issued threats against the movie and Sony itself. Due to the hackers, Sony has pulled the movie from its official release date on Christmas Day. If that wasn’t bad enough, the FBI has traced the hackers to North Korea. All of this would sound preposterous, like something out of a conspiracy theory, except it’s not. Suddenly, another stupid part of American society has transcended idiocy and reached the pinnacle of our fight for the freedom of the press. “We cannot let a dictator control us!” many have said. Even Obama has spoken out, stating that we should protect our freedoms at all costs. The swirls of confusion have heightened as North Korea has spoken that they did not intend to hurt innocent citizens, but that they would take action against those who were directly involved in making the film if the film were to be shown in theaters. However, they have denied any connection with the hacker group, and thus, America is in a whirl.
As Americans, we should protect our rights. But up to what point? Several movie critics were able to see the film, and, from what I’ve read, they’ve not been too disappointed with its withdrawal. Joe Morgenstern of the Wall Street Journal remarked “In the movie world, there’s no debate; watching The Interview was torture from start to finish.” Indeed, why are we so upset? Whether North Korea or a hacker group in another country is to blame for this, I don’t really care. If I were to find out who hacked it, I would do so only so that I could give them a big hug and thank them for their service to America. America has done enough. We have embarrassed ourselves in front of the world, we have enlightened it or perhaps scarred it for life with Sister Wives and Jersey Shore. Let us hold our peace. Let us not worry about our freedoms when they support such useless ideas. Let us let The Interview controversy go and realize that some things are not worth fighting for.