The joys of absolute power
That's the problem with living in a democracy: you tend to take things for granted. So we all blithely assume that we have and always will have a "right" to express ourselves (although in practice it's never been as far-reaching as it's fans would have you believe) by whatever means available. So we build our infrastructure without even acknowledging the assumption we've made. Whether we should consider the internet's inability to circumvent censorship as a bug is debatable. in the early days (ahh, so young, so naive) it was popular to say "the internet sees censorship as a fault and routes around it". That was fine until the assumption was tested and found wanting - presumably because none of the idealists ever thought than censorship could be done on such a wide scale.
The only question now is whether our western governments are quietly sidling up to the chinese and surreptitiously whispering "can you help us with our internet 'problem'?". Meanwhile, we're just waiting for the Big Yellow Taxi to turn up.
You don't know what you've got 'til it's gone