All this week (Monday through Friday) we have been paying homage to President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s most famous State of the Union speech—particularly the paragraphs known as The Four Freedoms. On Jan. 6, 1941, Roosevelt presented his justifications for American involvement in World War II, making the case for continued aid to Great Britain and greater production of war industries at home. “In helping Britain,” Roosevelt explained, “the United States was fighting for the universal freedoms that all people possessed.” Those freedoms are:
Freedom of Speech
Freedom of Worship
Freedom From Want
Freedom From Fear
Bringing this into the present, today we end with the reality of fake news (or so-called “alternative facts”), misinformation by any other name. Freedom of the press has always been our bulwark against tyranny. With Donald J. Trump’s dicta, fake news has engendered an alternate reality for his base. Fake news is nothing new (Orwell predicted “newspeak” in 1984, and the Nazis were geniuses at controlling the flow and content of it). In the cyber world, through trolls and bots, its goes viral and spreads as quickly as any disease.
As the election cycle progresses and strategies for cyber warfare (and fake facts) are made ready, The Daily Heller asked Viktor Koen to address the threats to our basic freedoms, in what we call “The Five Cyber Freedoms.” Koen’s illustrations are not done in the style of Norman Rockwell, who famously rendered Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms in four consecutive issues of The Saturday Evening Post (Feb. 20–March 13, 1943), as well as on posters to sell war bonds. His are not romantic, but cautionary depictions of the loss of freedoms during the social media conglomerate/Trump/Putin era.
Viktor Koen for The Daily Heller
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