Journalism has always been a dangerous profession. The desire to sniff out hard news is often paired with the risking of life and limb. As the “Arab Spring” became the “Arab Uprising” the need for awareness in a world of censorship has driven journalists to some of the most dangerous countries in the world.
According to an article from the Global Investigative Journalism Network, an average of one journalist dies every week. Which countries are culprits of much of the violence? The Middle East contains many of the countries in which exercising the freedom of the press is costly and may even require a life.
The Committee to Protect Journalists reported the year’s deaths as 37 journalists killed as of Sept. 7, 2013. This number has continued to increase.
“Honest journalism in the face of authoritarian regimes and police states is the highest form of courage, and the most dangerous, in the Middle East,” said Rami G. Khouri in an article for Nieman Reports.
Journalists consistently enter a hostile world full of conflict in order to report world-changing news. Increasing awareness of the risks taken by journalists, specifically those in the Middle East, is one way to show respect and thanks for the often heavy price of journalism.
World Press Freedom Day is observed on May 3 and serves as a reminder of the importance of the freedom of the press and the courage daily displayed by journalists. It’s time to learn more and get involved in honoring those who have risked everything for the freedom of expression.