Linux task list : Add fighting ignorant facism

Yes, it’s illegal to posess and/or distribute Linux because there’s no such thing as “free” software.

Found via David’s blog the UNIX Administratosphere.

Ken Starks, the maintainer of HeliOS Linux posts on his blog a lovely message he got from a teacher named “Karen”…

…I saw he was giving a demonstration of some sort. The student was showing the ability of the laptop and handing out Linux disks. After confiscating the disks I called a confrence with the student and that is how I came to discover you and your organization. Mr. Starks, I am sure you strongly believe in what you are doing but I cannot either support your efforts or allow them to happen in my classroom. At this point, I am not sure what you are doing is legal. No software is free and spreading that misconception is harmful

The Earth-shattering irony should be apparent to almost anyone. No one in the Linux world would ever “confiscate the disks” from children. What is harmful is the impression left on young minds about authority figures (who already have diminishing trust) and how ignorance to this degree may spread without properly being informed.

I always thought the kids at my school who spray panted “Fascists” on the lockers were nothing but just a bunch of punks. Never in my dreams would I have imagined those kids may have had a point.

It can be by banning books, software, art or destroying them altogether. But the prelude to any sort of facism, the hallmark of it, the one common theme, is the denial of access to information… Any sort of information.

A truly free society need not fear free ideas.

2 thoughts on “Linux task list : Add fighting ignorant facism

  1. I read this article a few days ago and wanted to explode for about eight billion different though obviously related reasons. If “Karen’s” first instinct is to deny access to information – regardless of whether the circumstances involve Linux or anything else – I would truly worry what she was teaching those children (my children, someday) and would lobby to have her removed from her post.

  2. Me too…

    Honestly, the only thing she had to do was to Google the word “Linux” and this mess would have been avoided.

    She or someone like her will always be there to jump down the throats of young, impressionable, children so vigilance is the key to freedom in the future.

    The outrage has more to do with her decision was when confronted with it than her ignorance. Her automatic assumption that “free software” doesn’t exist, is worth investigating. But her reasons for immediately assuming illegality and confiscating the disks is worth a more in-depth analysis.

    Ken had a point, though. Microsoft marketing may have something to do with it.

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