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“The staff of Project Censored presents their annual compilation of the previous year’s 25 stories most overlooked by the mainstream media along with essays about censorship and its consequences. The stories include an 813% rise in hate and anti-government groups since 2008, human rights violations by the US Border Patrol, and Israeli doctors injecting Ethiopian immigrants with birth control without their consent. Other stories focus on the environment, like the effects of fracking and Monsantos GMO seeds. The writers point out misinformation and outright deception in the media, including CNN relegating factual accounts to the “opinion” section and the whitewashing of Margaret Thatcher’s career following her death in 2013, unlike Hugo Chavez, who was routinely disparaged in the coverage following his death. One essay deals with the proliferation of “Junk Food News,” in which “CNN and Fox News devoted more time to ‘Gangnam Style’ than the renewal of Uganda’s ‘Kill the Gays’ law.” Another explains common media manipulation tactics and outlines practices to becoming a more engaged, free-thinking news consumer or even citizen journalist. Rob Williams remarks on Hollywood’s “deep and abiding role as a popular propaganda provider” via Argo and Zero Dark Thirty. An expose on working conditions in Chinese Apple factories is brutal yet essential reading. This book is evident of Project Censored’s profoundly important work in educating readers on current events and the skills needed to be a critical thinker.” -Publisher’s Weekly said about Censored 2014 (Oct.)
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Buy it, read it, act on it. Our future depends on the knowledge this col-lection of suppressed stories allows us.” —San Diego Review
“Censored 2014 is a clarion call for truth telling. Not only does this volume highlight fearless speech in fateful times, it connect the dots between the key issues we face, lauds our whistleblowers and amplifies their voices, and shines light in the dark places of our government that most need exposure.” –Daniel Ellsberg, The Pentagon Papers
“At a time when the need for independent journalism and for media outlets unaffiliated with and untainted by the government and corporate sponsors is greater than ever, Project Censored has created a context for reporting the complete truths in all matters that matter. . . . It is therefore left to us to find sources for information we can trust. . . . It is in this task that we are fortunate to have an ally like Project Cen-sored.” —Dahr Jamail
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“Project Censored continues to be an invaluable resource in exposing and highlighting shocking stories that are routinely minimized or ignored by the corporate media. The vital nature of this work is underscored by this year’s NSA leaks. The world needs more brave whistle blowers and independent journalists in the service of reclaiming democracy and challenging the abuse of power. Project Censored stands out for its commitment to such work.” —Deepa Kumar, author of Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire and associate professor of Media Studies and Middle Eastern Studies at Rutgers University
“Most journalists in the United States believe the press here is free. That grand illusion only helps obscure the fact that, by and large, the US corporate press does not report what’s really going on, while tuning out, or laughing off, all those who try to do just that. Americans–now more than ever–need those outlets that do labor to report some truth. Project Censored is not just among the bravest, smartest, and most rigorous of those outlets, but the only one that’s wholly focused on those stories that the corporate press ignores, downplays, and/or distorts. This latest book is therefore a must read for anyone who cares about this country, its tottering economy, and–most important– what’s now left of its democracy.” –Mark Crispin Miller, author, professor of media ecology, New York University.
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“[Censored] offers devastating evidence of the dumbing-down of main-stream news in America. . . . Required reading for broadcasters, journalists, and well-informed citizens.” —Los Angeles Times
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“In another home run for Project Censored, Censored 2013 shows how the American public has been bamboozled, snookered, and dumbed down by the corporate media. It is chock-full of ‘ah-ha’ moments where we understand just how we’ve been fleeced by banksters, stripped of our civil liberties, and blindly led down a path of never-ending war.” –Medea Benjamin, author of Drone Warfare, cofounder of Global Exchange and CODEPINK.
“For ages, I’ve dreamed of a United States where Project Censored isn’t necessary, where these crucial stories and defining issues are on the front page of the New York Times, the cover of Time, and in heavy rotation on CNN. That world still doesn’t exist, but we always have Project Censored’s yearly book to pull together the most important things the corporate media ignored, missed, or botched.” –Russ Kick, author of You Are Being Lied To, Everything You Know Is Wrong, and the New York Times bestselling series The Graphic Canon.
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“Project Censored is one of the organizations that we should listen to, to be assured that our newspapers and our broadcasting outlets are practicing thorough and ethical journalism.” —Walter Cronkite

Voting Status of Convicted Felons May Determine Outcome of 2012 Election

As the  2012 general election fast approaches the issue still lingers from the past two  elections of  2004 and 2008 regarding the voting rights of convicted felons. Since many felons are democrats, the issue has far reaching importance for the outcome of the election.  Presently, state laws concerning whether a convicted felon is allowed to vote, even after serving out a sentence, are inconsistent. For example, in the state of Alabama persons convicted of a felony may apply to have their voting rights restored immediately upon completion of their full sentence. However, those convicted of certain felony offenses such as murder, rape, incest, sexual crime against children, and treason are not eligible for re-enfranchisement even after prison time and probation/parole have been completed.  Tennessee forbids persons from voting who are convicted of murder, rape, treason, voter fraud or any degree of murder or rape or any felony offense under TCA Title 39, Chapter 16, parts 1, 4, or 5; or any sexual offense under TCA § 40-39-202(17) or any violent sexual offense under TCA § 4039-202(25) designated as a felony and where the victim of such offense was a minor.  On the other hand two states see nothing wrong with allowing incarcerated felons the right to vote.  Maine and Vermont join the rankings with the European Union, Israel, Japan, Kenya, Zimbabwe and Peru that allow prisoners to vote while incarcerated.

Student Researcher:  Valerie Louis, Indian River State College


Reiman, Jeffrey. “Liberal and Republican Arguments Against the Disenfranchisement of Felons.” Criminal Justice Ethics 24. 1 (2005): 3-18. Print.

Felonvoting. Pros and Cons. 2008. Web. 14 March 2012.

Faculty Instructor:  Elliot D. Cohen, Ph.D. Indian River State College


As the  2012 general election fast approaches the issue still lingers from the past two  elections of  2004 and 2008 regarding the voting rights of convicted felons.  Is it morally, ethically, and universally correct to deny a person a second chance to execute their civic duties after committing and being convicted of a crime, once they have fulfilled their obligation to society?  It is an inconceivable misunderstanding that a mistake in a person’s past should characterize the rest of their life, particularly with regard to a core right to participate in a democratic process. In theory, as a nation we believe in rehabilitation, and encourage criminals to pursue a better path upon their release, yet it hardly seems fair or wise to place obstacles in their way, such as the idea that they ought not reflect on their society or participate as an equal in decisions about their future; it is a cruel and alienating policy with little if any public policy rationale. At the very least, it is far too extensive. After they have served their time, and perhaps after they have remained out of trouble for a period (such as five years), voting should be permissible. To preclude, for life, access to a core right, an activity that gives people a sense of belonging in a collective enterprise, due to mistakes for which time has been served, is a moral and practical travesty (often carrying undertones of racial discrimination, to boot).

Some would argue that a felon should not have the right to vote. Felons give up a lot of their rights when they break the law. Convicted felons have broken laws of society and are punished accordingly. One of the consequences of their unacceptable behavior, besides prison, should be that they lose the right to vote permanently.

An estimated 5.26 million people (as of 2004) with a felony conviction are barred from voting in elections – a condition known as disenfranchisement. Each state has its own laws on disenfranchisement. Vermont and Maine allow felons to vote while in prison; nine other states permanently restrict certain felons from voting; and of those nine states Florida is one that restricts voting rights for life. Not only if you are a convicted felon, but if you are convicted of a misdemeanor as well you’re voting privileges are taken away for life.  The only way your voting rights might be restored in Florida is that you have to go through the clemency board and this process could take years.  Felons who have paid their debt to society by completing their prison sentence and or parole and probation, and have not committed a crime should be granted all their civil rights and privileges.

Allowing felons to vote under strict supervision even from prison would demonstrate a sense of belonging.  While incarcerated and even after release from prison ex-convicts do not have a sense of belonging to society.  Most of them are rejected and dejected by family, friends, and potential employers. “Of the 5.3 million Americans barred from voting due to a criminal conviction, most of which are non-violent in nature, thirty-nine percent have fully completed their sentences, including probation and parole, yet such individuals are still deprived of their right to vote. In several states, people with criminal records encounter a variety of other barriers to voting, including, most often, cumbersome restoration processes or lengthy waiting periods before rights restoration applications may even be submitted” (  Having the right to vote would display signs of rehabilitation and “…recognize their obligations as respect to the rights of others” (Reiman, p. 11).  “Studies have shown that the benefits of voting are numerous. Individuals who vote generally help to make their communities safer and more vibrant by giving to charity, volunteering, attending school board meetings, serving on juries and participating more actively in their communities. Research has also shown that individuals who vote are less likely to be rearrested” (ACLU).

The extent and impact of the disenfranchisement laws in the United States are beyond assessment, especially with regard to the continued deprivation of voting rights after incarceration.  The United States is the harshest among the democratic free world when it comes to felons and their right to vote. “Countries in the European Union, Israel, Japan, Kenya, Zimbabwe and Peru” (Reiman, p. 11), along with Vermont and Maine allow prisoners to vote from prison.  Universally, as a whole collective body there is no conformity among nations regarding citizens right to vote.

The general election will take place in November and several states have already changed their voting criteria making it harder for people with criminal records to vote.  Most would say it is racially motivated, since the majority of incarcerated men are African-American, but this affects all Americans not just African-Americans.  Morally and ethically, it is unjust to refuse a convicted felon their right to vote after they have served their obligation(s) to society.

In order for an ex-convict to be a part of humanity, we as a society must embrace them so they feel like they belong to society and one of the ways of belonging is allowing them to participate in voting.

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