For eight long years in this country we were forced to get our information from a media that did everything but wipe the butt of Barack Obama every time he stood up from his royal potty.
Scandal after scandal emerged during his presidency, and yet the mainstream media insisted on continuously treating Americans to stories about the infallibility and “dignity” of the first black president.
That “dignity” brought us the worst economy in decades; a disastrous public health policy that continues to punish Americans with skyrocketing premiums and fines; record African-American unemployment; a terrifically awful foreign policy strategy that led to Benghazi and jailed an innocent man for making a YouTube video; a Secretary of State so bad even he didn’t like her; spying on opposition candidates; running guns south of the border…the list goes on and on.
While some of these scandals might not be any more serious than any other administration has attempted, the point is that the legacy media in this country exercised exactly zero intellectual curiosity about what was or was not happening in Obama’s White House. They loved him, adored him even.
Any public figure in opposition to him or his policies was immediately slandered as “racist” or “bigoted” by the media. Every day was “Barack Obama Day” and for eight years Americans were robbed of the privilege of an antagonistic media.
That’s right…having an antagonistic media is a privilege. It may even be considered a “right” if you finesse the purpose of the first amendment enough. We somehow have a “right” to abort our babies so it isn’t that far-fetched.
Our founding fathers were adamant about the right of a free press to report on their politicians. The press was seen as an essential tool of accountability in the ongoing effort to separate their fledgling republic from oppressive monarchism. Since George Washington, presidents have complained about unfair treatment by the press.
Modern politicians spend a lot of time and effort finding ways to “spin” their stories to the press in attempt to avoid poor coverage. They instinctively know that the press can be dangerous and that is a very good thing.
The #resistance and #NeverTrump pump out op-ed after op-ed, tweet after tweet about the dangers of President Trump’s open resentment of the mainstream media. Trump makes no bones about it. He despises the media (with the exception of his friends at Fox News) and he does not hesitate to hurl insults and childish barbs. He says exactly what he’s feeling about the coverage he’s getting. While his feelings are justified given the amount of fake news being touted in the mainstream, his attitude and response are still annoying.
But dangerous? Not at all. In fact, Trump is doing exactly what he was elected to do. He is burning away the old notions of how we do politics in this country and replacing it with the dynamic that was originally intended between the press and the presidency – hostility.
An antagonistic press holds the president accountable and reminds our politicians that they are being watched and they are not immune to exposure. Any intelligent journalist worth their salt should be deeply disturbed if they find themselves in a friendly, cooperative relationship with a president.
Gossip guru Wendy Williams has built an empire as the queen of celebrity gossip talk. She is just as rich and influential as any of today’s top stars, yet she declines get involved on a personal level with celebrities. She says she couldn’t do her job properly if she became friendly with the very people she got paid to dig up dirt about.
Whatever your feelings about celebrity gossip, Williams is presenting a mature and rational view that seems to be lost on today’s press corp. Their absolute adoration of Obama brought this nation closer to dark times than any silly Trump insult. While Obama was actively squashing negative press and investigative reporting, the press continued to fawn all over his “most transparent administration in history”. There was hardly a peep about one of their own being targeted for unfavorable coverage.
Former CBS reporter Sheryl Attkisson also has her own shocking stories about confiscated hard drives and legal threats by Obama’s administration while attempting to investigate the Benghazi debacle.
At least we know where Trump stands. Obama smiled in our faces as he actively stifled press freedom.
The legacy media is only as upset as they are because they forgot themselves. They forgot that there are consequences for getting too close a President and it is the American people who bear the brunt of those consequences.
We don’t need to be frightened of Trump’s open disgust for his media foes. We should be comforted by it. It only spurs the media to be more suspicious of the most powerful position in the world. It only spurs them to do their jobs.
If Trump jails a reporter for investigating shady dealings, we’ll all know about it and can be appropriately outraged. Imagine what the coverage of Obama’s scandals might have been had he insulted his friends and social acquaintances in the mainstream media.
The first amendment is in no danger of suddenly being overturned by the first “reality tv” president, and Trump is in no danger of suddenly becoming “presidential” any time soon. The man is 71 years old. He is who he is and frankly, who he is (and is not) is what got him elected in the first place.
If anything, what we are seeing is a market correction in the media.
Everyone needs to stop whining and deal with it.