CBS Whistleblower Reveals Local Stations Being Instructed to Not Be Objective by Diversity Officers

AP Photo/Chris Pizzello

That the media wasn’t objective is something we already knew, but thanks to Project Veritas we now can see proof that objectivity is actually being pushed out by the companies who bring you the news.

A whistleblower named Brett Mauser came to Project Veritas from the CBS affiliate in San Antonio (KENS 5) and delivered shocking footage of training and instruction efforts from the station’s parent company Tegna, a company that owns CBS affiliates in San Antonio, Houston, and 62 other news stations across the country.

Within the footage, you can see diversity and training officers instructing, pressuring, and even intimidating employees to leave behind objectivity in journalism and embrace racial issues as the core concern of their work. Tegna’s Chief Diversity Officer, Grady Tripp, told employees that they were would be judged based on how much their work revolves around political ideology rather than actual journalism.

“At this point, if you’re not listening to a podcast, or looking at a video, or reading any of the information that’s out as far as equality and social justice and race, you don’t care…The other thing is we’re going to be holding stations accountable, right? We’re going to be holding stations accountable because we know it’s important to the organization. KPIs [Key Performance Indicators] are going to change, right? KPIs are going to reflect diversity and inclusion from a representation standpoint,” Tripp said.

Christina Karaoli Taylor of CKT Cultural Strategies is described as a “multicultural competency trainer” and was brought in to train the San Antonio journalists on the new way of doing things.

“Much of what we’re gonna talk about today is going to center around the main code of ethics of journalism. And a couple things — during this workshop and throughout your day, I challenge you to stop thinking in terms of objective journalism. We’ll discuss why that’s not really feasible anymore. But [think] in terms of accuracy, fairness, and transparency — always striving for objectivity is not feasible,” Taylor said.

Footage from CBS Houston also surfaced showing KHOU anchor Ron Treviño stating that he doesn’t care whether people trust him or not.

“I don’t really care if people trust us or not, we still have to do our job. Whether they trust us is the least of my concerns — whether they trust me or not,” Treviño said.

“This mindset has been able to grow and infect what was supposed to be the fourth pillar of society,” said Mauser. “aThe journalists are supposed to be our watchdogs. They’re the ones that are supposed to be protecting us from tyranny and supposed to be going out there and finding out and giving us the truth.”

Mauser said his intent with exposing all of this isn’t to destroy the news, but rather to force them to admit they have a problem and bring it back to the objectivity it once stood for.

“I don’t want to destroy the news. I don’t want anybody to get fired. I want people to change and realize that they are supposed to be objective. They are being told by another company and by their parent company to ‘not be objective’ — to be divisive. I just want them [CBS San Antonio] to admit they have a problem.”

Project Veritas reached out to CBS for comment about the uncovered footage, and CBS responded by saying that what we’re seeing with our own eyes and hearing with our own ears is simply a misunderstanding about the diversity and inclusion training and that this is exactly why this training is needed:

“These assertions by a former employee are a severe misunderstanding of what valuing inclusivity, diversity and equity in a newsroom means. This lack of understanding is exactly why we’re doing this training. A non-news employee secretly taped inclusivity training where our journalists were given tools and information and shared perspectives on how we can better serve all our audience. A journalist’s job is to present the truth and report the facts, not cater to opinions. Our inclusivity program makes our journalism stronger, particularly for communities that have not been well-served by our industry. We will continue this important work.”

As you can see, CBS did not attempt to explain the meaning behind some of the things being said by the diversity and inclusion officers, only saying that they were misunderstood. It’s unclear what we can misunderstand by one of the trainers openly saying that objective journalism is no longer feasible, or how employees would be judged based on their adherence to social justice rather than objectivity.

One thing is for sure. It would appear that Tegna and CBS do not care about objective journalism and would rather push propaganda and political narratives. This is the opposite of what journalism is supposed to be. Americans seem to have been catching onto this for some time now as trust in the media is at an all-time low.

Media outlets seem to have no desire in making this better. As Treviño said above, he’s not concerned at all about the public’s trust in him.

The media is no longer about the news. It’s about propaganda. Don’t trust it.