In college, I learned that generalizing is a bad thing for reporters and commentators. It’s ironic that I’m breaking my own training by generalizing about the craft that I studied all those years ago. Mainstream media in general is unabashedly opposed to Donald Trump. They need to be put squarely in their place. Then deserve the “Trump Treatment.”
I thought it was bad during the campaign. That was nothing. The complete and utter meltdown of respected journalists over Trump’s inauguration, Sean Spicer’s first press conference, and every little move the administration has made in the three days since Trump became President of the United States has placed them even further down on the trust scale. We’re no longer seeing subtle leanings or hidden propaganda. Many of the biggest names in journalism are making mockeries of themselves and the government they’re attempting to cover.
The Trump Treatment is this: disregard their reports, offer an alternative, and allow Americans to choose which truth to believe. In any other situation, this would be the type of Kremlinesque attack on media that I would oppose. Considering how badly the media is botching their jobs, I see it as unfortunately justified.
Their bias is blatant. There’s no longer a need to pretend otherwise. For example, here’s WaPo:
If you’re thinking that the article may not be as insulting as the headline, don’t. It’s actually worse.
Another example surrounded the report that Trump had MLK’s bust removed from the Oval Office. To the credit of the TIME reporter who made the initial claim, he quickly and adamantly tried to correct the record and displayed genuine remorse for spreading such an inflammatory rumor. Other journalists who had reported it weren’t as loud with their retractions and even took offense when I tried to call them out on it.
It would be different if we were used to this sort of thing. After all, we just had a failed Presidency for the past eight years. Where was the media through the many debacles at the hands of the Obama administration? Instead of rebuking him, they were fawning over him. As Mollie Hemingway pointed out, their treatment of Obama is one of the reasons they have no credibility in their attacks on Trump.
How are they getting away with this? As has become the custom for those who push fake news (which today seems to be just about everyone in mainstream media), their technique is a straightforward three-step process:
Now is the time that conservatives should be helping to guide Trump through advice and dissent. We should be encouraging him when he does the right thing and calling him out when he does the wrong things. Unfortunately, the mainstream media is positioning us in a way that forces many to take Trump’s side even when we don’t fully agree with his perspectives. This polarization forced by media is hurting the nation in many ways while helping only those ignorant enough to feel vindicated by negative press reports about him.
It would be easy for conservatives to push Trump in the right direction if we didn’t have to defend him constantly against unfair attacks. We’ve seen that he listens; the immigration “softening” during the campaign is an example of a proposed idea that he shifted based upon outcry from conservatives. Instead of being a voice of reason whispering in his ears, we’re forced to fight the corrupt liberalism launched at him from mainstream media. This is going to be a long four years for the press if they don’t change their ways quickly.