Orwell on Freedom

“The relative freedom which we enjoy depends of public opinion. The law is no protection. Governments make laws, but whether they are carried out, and how the police behave, depends on the general temper in the country. If large numbers of people are interested in freedom of speech, there will be freedom of speech, even if the law forbids it; if public opinion is sluggish, inconvenient minorities will be persecuted, even if laws exist to protect them.”
—George Orwell, 1945

It’s Orwell Week (#1 of 3)

George Orwell was a pen name for Eric Arthur Blair (1903–1950), an English novelist, essayist, journalist, and critic best known for the novella Animal Farm (1945), and Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949).

Orwell understood policing. In 1922 Blair took a position as a police officer in Burma. A colleague there recalled that Blair was fast to learn the language and that before he left Burma, “was able to speak fluently with Burmese priests in ‘very high-flown Burmese.'”

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