Free Press Protest

8333C3D0-C775-4349-BDB5-1A9763F2C40DDonald Trump has been accusing the mainstream media of spewing fake news and has called the free press an enemy of the American people. In response, an estimated 300 newspapers have signed on to a call from the Boston Globe for a coordinated editorial campaign in today’s editions as a way to protest against President Trump’s “dirty war on the free press.”

Naturally, I assumed that, when I opened my paper this morning and turned to the editorial page, I would see a well-crafted, engaging defense of the free press. After all, I live in San Francisco, the heart of the resistance.

But no such editorial was there. WTF? So I went to the newspaper’s website to see if maybe they published the protest editorial there. Nada.

But I did find an article attempting to justify why the editorial board of the Chronicle did not join the protest.

“It’s not that we take issue with the argument that Trump’s assault on the truth generally, and his efforts to diminish the free press specifically, pose a serious threat to American democracy,” the article said. “We wholeheartedly agree with Marjorie Pritchard, the Globe’s deputy editorial page editor, that such unprecedented attacks on press freedom by the president of the United States ‘are alarming.’”

The concern, according to the Chronicle article, is that “it plays into Trump’s narrative that the media are aligned against him” and that Trump will use that as an excuse to spew out tweets accusing the fake news media of collusion and anti-Trump bias. “He surely will attempt to cite this day of editorials to discredit critical and factual news stories in the future, even though no one involved in those pieces had anything to do with this campaign,” the article suggested.

“Our editorial page will continue to speak out against this president’s war on the free press. Our silence on Thursday is testament to our commitment to do it in our own way, on our own timetable.”

Personally, I disagree with the position the newspaper’s editors took to not participate in this organized protest. Sure, Trump will probably lash out at those newspapers for speaking out against him. That’s what he does. But should that threat render us silent? Should anger or retaliation on the part of our unhinged, incompetent, vindictive president cause us to stop protesting what he’s doing to our nation?

I don’t think so. What do you think?

9 thoughts on “Free Press Protest

  1. writebrainwidow August 16, 2018 / 9:57 am

    As John Brennan did yesterday, after Potus childishly spiteful withdrawal of his security clearance, he vowed to continue to speak out. The San Francisco Chronicle’s excuse for why they are not standing up to him, sits squarely where 45 wants them to be – too scared to stand up to him. The media SHOULD be aligned – not against anyone but against the hateful, dangerous rhetoric he continues to spew. I get the ‘going high’ thing – but it also just enables continued debasement of the free press, something that no matter how previous presidents might have been annoyed by it – supported it – as Jefferson, Washington, Roosevelt did. That’s what AUTHENTIC leaders do.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Marilyn Armstrong August 16, 2018 / 10:13 am

    I see their point, but I agree with you. Because by being silent, you are intrinsically agreeing to Trump’s terms. If he says “be silent” and you are, you aren’t doing it on your own terms. You’re just doing it HIS way. Is this a sponsorship issue? Too many Trump sponsored advertisements? Too fragile and economy for your Times? It could be. Many newspapers are barely surviving. One of New York’s few remaining major newspapers was recently disassembled by Sinclair or its minions leaving us one more paper shy of any kind of reality. Mind you, I was never a big fan of the News, but it was still an important voice and it WAS the voice of the people in a way that the Times will never be.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. magnoliajem August 16, 2018 / 8:09 pm

    It’s incomprehensible to me that they made an editorial decision based on their expectation of 45’s reaction That makes San Francisco Chronicle the antithesis of free press. Like the FOX of print media.

    Liked by 1 person

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