Standing up to the news media.
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"Thank God for Donald Trump." There, I've said it. Now let me tell you why. Most newly elected presidents enjoy a short period of harmony before the press openly attacks them. Not Donald Trump. He has been under attack since well before he shocked the media by his victory in November. Between the press, the Democrats in Congress, the DC and entertainment establishments, and the anarchists in the street, an unwholesome rebellion has erupted to thwart Mr. Trump at every turn. It is so vicious, it makes the Nixon episode seem like "Bambi."
Now we come to learn the press is indeed anti-Trump, at least according to a new study by the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy (May 18th) which analyzed the media's coverage of Mr. Trump's first 100 days in office. Basically, it confirms what many of us have long suspected, that the president is not getting a fair shake from the press.
The report scrutinized the coverage of such heavyweights as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, CBS, CNN, Fox News, and NBC, as well as three European news outlets (The UK’s Financial Times, the BBC, and Germany’s ARD). From this, some interesting facts emerged:
First, the president dominated 41% of all news coverage, representing three times the amount of coverage when compared to other presidents.
Second, for most of his presidency, the coverage of Mr. Trump was more negative than positive, thereby setting a new standard for unfavorable press coverage. The one exception was during the period of the Syrian rocket attack.
Third, over 90% of the news stories from CNN, NBC and CBS were negative. Fox News came closest to parity between positive and negative stories, but 52% of their stories were also considered negative.
Bottom-line, the report paints a picture of a biased news media. Why are they so overtly negative? Perhaps they are still miffed from miscalling Mr. Trump's victory in November. One can also speculate the news media is an organ of the Liberal agenda and is bent on taking back the Congress and the White House. Consequently, their rhetoric is intended to stir anger in the country and cause disharmony.
Most likely, this indignation is aimed more at Republicans in general as opposed to just Mr. Trump. Had another Republican won the election, such as Sen. Ted Cruz, Sen. Marco Rubio, Gov. John Kasich, or any of the remaining 15 candidates, the press would have surely turned their venom on them as well. The big difference is Mr. Trump is considered an outsider, not imbued with political protocol. Nor will he be intimidated by the press and has taken the fight to them, as opposed to sitting and taking it. Whereas other presidents tried to play nice with the press, in hopes they will be treated fairly, Mr. Trump seemed to instinctively know who his enemies were and has pushed back, much to the surprise and anger of the media.
The president's Republican opponents during the election did not have the combative spirit of Mr. Trump. Now that we know how vicious the press can be, we should consider how others would have handled the scrutiny of the savage press, such as Sen. Rubio, Gov. Walker, Gov. Jeb Bush, et al? Most likely, they would have found themselves playing defense. Even Carly Fiorina, the press would have overlooked her as being the first female president and would have attacked her unmercifully.
Poll after poll shows the credibility of the press continues to diminish with the American public, yet they staunchly defend their one-sided approach to covering the president.
Only Donald Trump had the temerity to face the news media and take them to task. Whereas others would have tried to play nice with the press, they would still be vilified. Fortunately, Mr. Trump seems to know their intention and shows no sign of backing down from them. Some might say, "How can he stand such abuse? Why doesn't he just throw it in and retire to an island somewhere?" That is most definitely not Mr. Trump's style as he doesn't run from a fight, which is why I say...
Thank God for Donald Trump.
Keep the Faith!
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Tim Bryce is a freelance writer and mangement consultant in the Tampa Bay area of Florida.
For Tim’s columns, see: timbryce.com
Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.
Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST