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Can Freedom of Expression Be Harmful?

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Everyone has something to contribute to this world and a unique point of view that they can share whether it is in the form of an artwork or a speech that touches hearts and changes lives. People are allowed to voice their thoughts and opinions openly because of our right to freedom of speech. We all have complex emotions that we feel very passionate about and that direct our actions in various ways. We strive to help others understand our emotions so that they may understand us. However, according to Wikipedia, there are numerous people who suffer from alexithymia. This is a constraint or an inability to express your emotions. People develop this because they are afraid of rejection and do not know how to express their feelings. Due to this, expression may take many forms, from dance to poetry and it is all an attempt to be understood by others. An expression may not be intended to harm and yet it still can. A powerful speech, graphic art or intense writing can be a negative influence.

There are many writings about all kinds of eating disorders and even though they are negative, the writing over glamorises them with phrases like “At first it was working” or “I only feel pretty when I’m hungry”. Art can also glamorise mental disorders, such as depression, by making the art very graphic. This can have a negative effect on individuals. Freedom of expression can be a powerful tool used to change the world.

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Women used their freedom of expression to become equal with men. It was used in the form of silent marches, meaningful posters and persuasive speeches. When they made their voices heard the world had no choice but to change and adapt. By this, we can see that freedom of expression can change the world if used correctly. It can also change the way that people think, behave and treat each other.

Social media provides a platform for people to express themselves and share their opinions. However, we will be held accountable for whatever we post. On Twitter, there have been multiple people who have lost their jobs and credibility because of the careless posts on their profiles. There have also been a number of celebrities who have gotten massive backlash from racist or inappropriate posts on social media. Pewdiepie was fired from Disney and got negative attention from many news platforms like The Wallstreet Journal because of a careless joke he made. This emphasises the responsibility we have when sharing and expressing ourselves. I believe that freedom of expression is necessary for everyone as long as it is respected and used correctly and for the good of everyone.


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