Fear leads the way to the dark side

Fear leads the way to the dark side

I used to think the current government hated the Internet and that was the reason why they do everything in their power to kill it. I thought they hated the idea of people sharing information. I thought they despised the fact that boys and girls can communicate freely without supervision. I now know better.

I have understood that it is not hatred that caused all the outrage against social media outlets, but fear.

As a sci-fi maniac, this immediately reminded me of a quote from Yoda from the Star Wars movies. Yoda, the all-knowing Jedi Master, gave this warning to his young “padawaan” Anakin Skywalker, “Fear leads the way to the dark side. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering.”

Unfortunately, in the movie Anakin Skywalker doesn’t take Yoda’s advice seriously and gives in to hate, becoming the notoriously evil Darth Vader.

I feel that I am watching the movie in real life. I don’t know if someone made this warning to our government, but I feel that we are at the stage of suffering. There is very little time left before arriving at the point of no return. After that, there is very little hope.

Our prime minister has publicly declared that the first thing he will do after a possible victory is to ban all social media outlets and possibly cut connections to the Internet, all together if necessary.

In the movie, Darth Vader comes to his senses at the last possible second and saves his child from death. I wonder if our prime minister will be able to do the same and let us have some freedom over the Internet.

To foreigners who are reading this column it probably seems impossible. If this is the first time you are visiting our lovely country, you are probably thinking to yourself: “How can one man decide such an important matter as freedom of the Internet?”

Unfortunately, this is the reality we face every day. And soon you will see that his grip on vital issues is very real and widespread. You will find it difficult to work and live in Turkey. This is exactly what we are trying to make our government understand. Technology leveled the field globally and transparency has even become the norm of business and everyday life. We, as consumers, demand to know in which conditions the orange we buy is produced. On the other hand, we as citizens demand to know how our taxes are spent, how the government conducts its business, etc.

With or without the Internet, we will demand it. Without the Internet, the process will be slower and more painful. Tayyip Erdoğan should realize that. There is no turning back. Transparency and the full embracement of the Internet is the only way forward. Otherwise if he and his government give themselves to fear, there will only be suffering for all of us.