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Voices / Letters from readers

Press and editorial wallow in demonization of Donald Trump

RE: “Make no mistake: This attack on our free press — your free press — is deliberate and calculated.” [Editorial, Aug. 15]:

What press operations have been “reined in and silenced”? Facebook increasingly closes down TeleSur and Venezuela Analysis, and Alex Jones and InfoWars have been shut down in a concerted action by iTunes, YouTube, Spotify, Facebook, and now Twitter. Many other so-called conservative broadcasters have been removed from Twitter and demonetized by YouTube. It is not the president’s critics being silenced, but his supporters, along with critics of American “liberal” imperialism.

Yet this editorial ignores all that and continues to wallow in the demonization of Trump that has appeared to be the mission of most of the press since election day 2016, not in the interest of “comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable” (where was that rabid sense of mission during Obama’s administration and Clinton’s campaign? Where will it be when Trump’s terms are done?), but in what can only be called a naked antagonism to the results of an election.

Trump attacks those who unfairly attack him. His use of the broad terms “press” and “people” are the rhetorical exaggerations he is known for. Some press outlets are against some of the people, against those who voted for Trump and the increasing numbers who think he should be given a chance. And by agitating for his removal with John Birch Society–inspired hysteria, they are against our democracy itself.

Since when does the press get a free pass? The mainstream press has always been promoting the agendas of the powerful, the parties of war and Wall Street. Not questioning the criticism of President Trump (particularly as it is rarely about actual policy and is so often expressed in apocalyptic tones) is no more responsible than not questioning the voices of support.

We are also obliged to criticize the press when they merely echo the lies of the powerful. In this case, much of the press has taken a side, not just against the policies of the president, but against the election itself. Just as the U.S. has in the past agitated in other countries for coups against democratic outcomes they don’t like, much of the press, including the writers this editorial, is now agitating for a coup here at home.

Ruby Bode
Westminster

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Thomas Tren
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Sep 2018
Thomas Tren

The difference is the John Birch Society is and always has been right, while the anti-Trump nutjobs are insane.

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Ruby Bode
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Aug 2018
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Ruby Bode (Westminster, Vermont, US)

They are both obsessed with Russia.

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Patricia Holtz
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Sep 2018
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Patricia Holtz (Brattleboro, US)

Absolutely right on target. So tired of this papers one sided views on just about everything.Freedom of the press means showing both sides not one sided liberal views. By only fostering your demonization of those who stand with this President only confirms my belief that this paper as so many have lost their way and no longer understands what it means to be fair or balanced.

 
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Originally published in The Commons issue #476 (Wednesday, September 12, 2018). This story appeared on page D3.

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