It is not just in certain countries. It is not just in your country, or their country. It is everywhere.

As a journalist I was trained to know what is safe, how to be non-biased. What to say, who not to offend, how to come off as just the messenger. Because just one joke, crude remark, or a simple opinion can cost your life.

We have all read the stories. In January of 2015, 12 people whom worked at the magazine Charlie Hebdo were murdered by the terrorist group Al-Queda because the content the magazine produced offended them At least 34 journalists have been murdered in Russia since Putin’s takeover. The control is not just concentrated in one area. In 2015 there were 72 journalists killed worldwide. For the content they produce, for Facebook posts, for just talking.

So how does a writer; or anyone who produces any content, feel safe? It is called freedom of the press, and freedom is protected in most countries. Citizens are allowed to voice their needs. In those countries where citizens are feared is where the freedom is stripped. And this could be anywhere; America, Russia, North Korea. Anywhere. The only way to feel safe is to know that you scare them. To know that your words or art mean something and could make a difference. Your words could mean safety for others in the future.

Published by Chelsea Hinkofer