As Thomas Jefferson said: "Our liberty depends on freedom of the press. And that cannot be limited without being lost."
Since his inception at President, and even before, President Donald Trump has repeatedly called the media (lumping us all together) fake news and the enemy of the people. And yet, he has failed to give specifics of why he calls us that. I get that there have been those in the media who have not done their job of fact checking stories and making sure that their news was accurate. But is that a reason to lambast our First Amendment? What message does that send to the founding fathers? It is because of those in power who want to glaze over any less than ethical things they have done or lies they have told that the media needs to be accurate and allowed to publish those truths.
Sit back a moment and think about Watergate. If not for the news media coming out with the story the whole thing would have remained a secret and Nixon would not have resigned. Play that whole thought process through. It makes me wonder where our country would be today had that happened like that.
The news media is often called the fourth branch of government. The reason for this is that we are supposed to provide a check and balance to the government to make sure they are doing right by the citizens of our great nation. When the national media themselves don’t report accurately and fairly it is a problem for us all. Having said that there are times when even when you do report the truth, some will still call you bias. Merely because they don’t like the truth when it doesn’t agree with what they believe. But the truth is the truth and it doesn’t always appear to be fair, but it is still the truth. Trump would do better to tell the truth and then he wouldn’t have to worry about the media. I have always said if you tell the truth you don’t have to worry about your story.
The news media is the watchdog of the government and I would think that the office of the President would think twice about messing with the First Amendment. It’s not just the media who is covered in the First Amendment. It’s the average Joe Voter who tells an off color joke in jest or who wants to protest in disagreement. Maybe instead of spending all his time on bashing the media Trump should work with the media to put an end to “fake news” Instead of bashing all the news media, maybe he should give specific incidents and people who have reported fake news and then hold those people accountable, as well as their editors and publishers who allowed the fake news story to proceed. It’s so easy to just lump a group together and bash them all but that hurts everyone.
I’d ask Trump to take the high road and seek out those who cover the news accurately and fairly and take his concerns to them. Bring those news people into the White House and be honest about issues that are happening. Instead of bashing, find a way to make a solution instead of more problems.
Frankly, I think Trump could do a lot of good if he just kept his mouth shut and off of Twitter with some of his comments. He disrespects everything good that he does with some of the garbage that comes out of his mouth. I’d like to see him bring some respect back to the office of President instead of helping the fake news media out and making our nation a laughingstock at dinner parties. Just my thoughts of course.
Look at countries that do not have a free press. Is that what we want for our great nation? I don’t think so.
Until next time...