Wednesday, February 21, 2018 06:16:07 PM

Who’s Afraid of Donald Trump? | America Elects a Fact-Free President

By Nalaka Gunawardene - Sun Nov 13, 5:21 am

[Writer’s note: The following article was written as my weekly column named Online/Offline for The Nation newspaper, Sri Lanka. It was submitted within hours of the US presidential election being concluded and results becoming known on 9 Nov 2016. The column was accepted and lined up for publication on the newspaper’s print edition for the weekend of Nov 12/13, but was pulled out at the last minute. Apparently the management was concerned about the column depicting the US president elect in a ‘bad light’.

 I was completely taken aback by this reasoning. As a long term chronicler and critic of information society, I had merely used the US presidential election as a ‘news peg’ to discuss an Internet-driven phenomenon that is not unique to the United States or to electoral politics. Rather, it is something that should concern open societies everywhere.

To withhold the column on an interpretation that it is negative about the US president elect is a meaningless act of self-censorship by a supposedly independent media outlet in a sovereign nation….

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