President Donald Trump has made no secret about his disdain, or in some cases outright animosity, toward a number of press outlets who he has castigated at very least for being ‘fake news’ and at worse for pushing lies and being an ‘enemy of the people.’ Likely, this is in response to the near-constant attacks from major press outlets and to a number of reports of questionable reporting.
However, now the mainstream media is boosting its ‘security’ presence at various events and trying to say that it is due to President Trump’s statements portraying them as an enemy of the people that they feel the need to spend that money on security. Frankly, that claim seems silly and hard to substantiate. Worst still, they made these hypocritical claims without providing one example for evidence. Perhaps if they want to see the nation’s political discourse be less visceral, they should help begin that change with their own work.
According to reporters, more and more of them are hiring security when they go to the various rallies held by Donald J. Trump around the nation where he gets his story out to the people and connects with them.
He included a comment that said that he needed a security guard when covering rallies hosted by President Donald Trump.
Networks deploying security for their reporters on the ground at events hosted by the president is not a new protection, however, despite it being new for a few people reporting on such events.
Indeed, they deployed security at rallies as far back as 2016, during the presidential campaign which saw Hillary Clinton lose to Donald Trump.
However, since the Capital Gazette shooting in Annapolis, Maryland, which didn’t seem to have anything to do with Donald Trump, but rather with a long-running feud between the shooter and an employee, some news outlets have been investing more in security for their reporters who attend events put on by the president.
Some in the media also cited the president’s ‘ramped-up’ rhetoric on Twitter, where he declared the media the ‘enemy of the people’ five times in the last month.
Reporters are also starting to talk about the ‘threats’ that they face more often.
One White House reporter said that people have been talking about threats a lot more in the last month, blaming the shooting and the president’s “stepped-up rhetoric.”
She talked about nasty letters, packages, emails, and even messages that wish horrible things like rape and death on people like her.
Politico reached out to a number of news agencies, including CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC News, and others. The major agencies listed refused to comment on changes they had made to their security processes and policies if any.
Other agencies, however, indicated that they had begun taking security much more seriously.
New York Times spokesperson Danielle Rhoades Ha said that the organization takes the safety of their reporters very seriously and said that in recent months, against the backdrop of “increased threats and verbal attacks,” the company had increased measures to protect their journalists.
The Washington Post made similar statements, which originated with Gregg Fernandes, their vice president in charge of security.
A spokesperson for Fox News made similar statements.
Reporters who talked to Politico said that even though they did not feel fearful at recent President Trump events they attended, they did feel like violence could easily break out.
Perhaps most interesting, they didn’t manage to show one concrete example of why they needed it. Leftist media personalities celebrated the shooting of Representative Steve Scalise, laughed at the assault Rand Paul’s neighbor perpetrated upon him, and didn’t say much when Allison Lundergan Grimes, his competitor, used a joke about Paul’s assault as a talking point, but now they feel the need to have more security?
It probably doesn’t help strengthen the media’s credentials when wide swaths of the American people believe that they do not report honestly or fairly, or that they at least sometimes report fake news.
Gallup polls show that trust in the media remains at historic lows in the United States and has been trending steadily downwards for years.
No one deserves to be threatened for doing their job. However, that doesn’t mean that the media deserves to be lauded, or celebrated when they’re dishonest, petty, or disingenuous in their reporting.
To be fair, it is nice to see the media waking up after rarely questioning the past administration.