Julian Assange: Why Should I Care?
December 31, 2012 in Politics
Five months ago there were headlines of a man by the name of Julian Assange, who was granted diplomatic asylum in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. However, the most background information I would see about this Assange in major U.S. news outlets was the following: he is the founder of WikiLeaks, who is currently subject to a European Arrest Warrant in response to a Swedish police request for questioning in relation to a sexual assault investigation. All that follows is that the British government intends to extradite Assange to Sweden so he can face the alleged charges against him. After that, such articles mostly go into the politics behind Ecuador’s “interference” and how Britain can legally extradite Julian Assange. Now, why should this even be a headline? More importantly, how does this alleged sexual offender even deserve our slightest attention? The answer is simple: Assange’s case represents the classic confrontation between secretive governments and freedom of the press; and not just freedom of the press, but freedom of knowledge, which is among the essential components of a democratic society.