This Cannot Continue …

The Founding Fathers gave the free press the protection it must have to bare the secrets of government and inform the people. – Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black

Contrary to what Donald Trump has claimed repeatedly, the press is not the ‘enemy of the people’.  The press does its job to inform the people of what is happening in the government we support, both financially and with our votes, as well as what is happening around the world.  Sometimes they make mistakes, sometimes perhaps they cross a line, but for the most part, they are our lifeline to the world and to our own government.  Without them, we would have become a dictatorship many years ago, I think.

Donald Trump showed no love for the press, putting them down, mocking, and criticizing at every turn during his campaign.  Some believed that once he took office he would find ways to be more ‘presidential’, rather than doing things like mocking a disabled reporter.  I never believed he would tone down his rhetoric against the press, and had deep-seated concerns that he would, in fact, turn up the volume until his verbiage had the effect of curtailing the freedom of the press and binding their hands.  It would seem that he is well on his way to attempting to do just that.

On Saturday night, Trump attended an event to benefit veterans where he gave a speech, much of which addressed his feud with the media rather than anything to do with veteran affairs.  “The fake media is trying to silence us, but we will not let them. The people know the truth. The fake media tried to stop us from going to the White House, but I’m president and they’re not.”

But worse was yet to come.  At 9:21 EDT on Sunday (02 July 2017) morning, Trump twitted a tweet that included a video. It is a 28-second clip that shows Donald Trump at a pro wrestling event, body-slamming to the floor a man with a CNN logo for a head. Some of his fans laughed at the video. Others rolled their eyes. But it was taken seriously by members of the media, some of whom have faced threats for their reporting. This three-ring circus is what the office of the president has been turned into, folks.

Can anyone even begin to imagine what would have happened if President Obama had posted a similar video???

It is crude and crass and diminishes the respect of the office, to be sure.  But equally alarming is the stage it sets for Trump, his minions in the White House, and worst of all, his supporters, to further attempt to denigrate the press, tarnish their legitimacy, and promote violence against reporters who are trying to do their job.  In recent weeks, there have been a number of slaps-in-the-face to the press, starting with disallowing audio and video recordings of White House press briefings.  This latest is a blatant attempt to discredit the press, and encourages those who would incite violence.

CNN issued the following statement:

“It is a sad day when the President of the United States encourages violence against reporters. Clearly, Sarah Huckabee Sanders lied when she said the President had never done so. Instead of preparing for his overseas trip, his first meeting with Vladimir Putin, ‎dealing with North Korea and working on his health care bill, he is involved in juvenile behavior far below the dignity of his office. We will keep doing our jobs. He should start doing his.”

A director of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said, “Charged rhetoric online undermines the media in the US and emboldens autocratic leaders around the world”. And one of the most legendary media figures, Carl Bernstein, said “It’s just not anti-CNN, it’s anti-freedom of the press.”

Homeland Security advisor Tom Bossert dismissed the idea that the tweet might be a threat, while he praised the president for “genuine” communication. “No one would perceive that as a threat; I hope they don’t.”  Perhaps he has forgotten about the incident in May when then-candidate Greg Gianforte physically beat up a Guardian reporter the day before the election – and was elected in spite of his vicious behaviour! And certainly he has forgotten the mentality of a large portion of Trump supporters who are energized by his cheap, trashy talk.

Trump most certainly DOES incite violence with his ill-chosen rhetoric, and he is obstructing the press from doing their jobs, though I have no doubt that they will continue to do their jobs, perhaps even more diligently now, while learning to tune out the head clown in this circus.

Past presidents have been critiqued by the press, and every single one has been frustrated from time to time with the press.  However, past presidents learned to work with the press, not against them.  Nixon, Bush, Clinton, and even Thomas Jefferson railed against the press on occasion, but none have ever taken it to the degree that Trump has, none have ever crossed the line that begins the destruction of a free press. Mr. Trump has repeatedly denigrated various members of the press in very personal, vicious and crass ways.  Take, for example, his tweets last week against the hosts of Morning Joe:

I heard poorly rated @Morning_Joe speaks badly of me (don’t watch anymore). Then how come low I.Q. Crazy Mika, along with Psycho Joe, came..

…to Mar-a-Lago 3 nights in a row around New Year’s Eve, and insisted on joining me. She was bleeding badly from a face-lift. I said no!

Crazy Joe Scarborough and dumb as a rock Mika are not bad people, but their low rated show is dominated by their NBC bosses. Too bad!

At least three Republican senators spoke out against these tweets:

Lindsey Graham: “Mr. President, your tweet was beneath the office and represents what is wrong with American politics, not the greatness of America.”

Ben Sasse: “Please just stop. This isn’t normal and it’s beneath the dignity of your office.”

Susan Collins: “This has to stop – we all have a job – 3 branches of gov’t and media. We don’t have to get along, but we must show respect and civility.”

The time has come to put an end to this madness … the circus train has gone off its tracks and is rolling down a very steep, dangerous mountainside, threatening to wipe out the homes of freedom, respectability, sanity and life itself in the U.S.  I call on every member of Congress, regardless of party affiliation, to do the right thing and start impeachment proceedings immediately, before the circus train becomes even more out of control.  We The People cannot stand for any more of the moronic behaviour coming out of the White House, and as long as the head clown is driving the train, it will never stop.  And I call on those who have chosen to bury their heads in the sand, who think “this too shall pass”, to wake up, for by your silence, you are helping to allow this to become our ‘new normal’. We have lost our good standing in too many nations around the globe already, but now we stand to lose the one institution that stands a chance to protect us from the evil within:  the free press.  WAKE UP CONGRESS!!!

43 thoughts on “This Cannot Continue …

  1. “Wake up Congress” indeed. What a mess he’s making of the office of the President. He’s a first class bully. Lacking manners is putting it mildly. It’s totally boorish and childish behavior. It gives me a headache to imagine four more years of this assault on the press not to mention on democratic values. — Suzanne

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trump & Kim Jong-un are equally matched in temperament … both have the minds of an 8-year-old in a full-size ( and I DO mean full-size!!!) body. They will antagonize each other until one goes too far, but it is my sincere hope that the cooler, wiser minds of their advisors will prevail … on both sides. Sigh.

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  2. Great Piece. Can’t argue! It’s madness. I have had my own complaints with various media outlets for being biased, but I also exert some critical thinking and take information different publications with different leanings. Somewhere in the middle one finds the truth…yet…when one insulates oneself in the Fox and Friends Echo-Chamber you will allow your ideology and perception of reality to become warped…much like a Jedi Mind Trick, it works only on the weak-minded (infer what you will from that). The fact that FAKE NEWS has also become “a thing” now is horrific! In dystopian forecast of the worst-case-scenario: We see the rise of the State-Run Media outlet Fox and their “print” outlets like Breitbart distributing Orellian-doublespeak and false claims from the Propaganda Ministry headed by Huckabee-Sanders, Spicer, and Conway. Vigilence is key: Rome was not built in a day…neither are autocracies, it all happens via the “slippery slope.”

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    • Agreed. I could make a full-time job out of simply correcting mis perceptions from Facebook memes that have no legitimacy, yet people believe every word. The thing is, when I do a bit of fact-checking and explain to the person what really happened, or that it is a complete fiction, instead of being more cautious in the future, instead of deleting the faux news story, they get mad at me! So I mostly stopped wasting my time, although on occasion I will do so just to be annoying 😉 We must hold our press accountable, but we must also understand that they will occasionally get it wrong. As much as I research for my writing (10 hours a day, most days), I still get it wrong sometimes. The press isn’t perfect, but without them … I fear what we would become. I support the good ones 100%. Fox, Breitbart, InfoWars … I have no time for.

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    • I agree with you on the use of Twitter … I do not care for it at all … and it damn sure seems unprofessional as a means of communication from the leader of a nation, yet more and more they are all using it. I love your expression “one sandwich short of a picnic”! 😀

      More and more, I question whether this is the ‘land of the free’. I think the tides are turning in the opposite direction and we may well be losing ground. If people keep their heads buried in the sand, we will surely lose more freedoms before long.

      Thanks, Jack … hugs & kisses back to you! ❤ ❤ ❤

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  3. Annndd here we go….
    A few republicans are starting to worry about what is happening to the dignity of the office of President…Now they’re getting it!
    And still only 30% (generous tops) of the voting population supporting him.
    At this stage, it has to be…..
    My question to him would be “Are you sitting comfortable?”
    He’d bluster something and I could reply.
    ” I thought I’d ask because you appear to be upside down. Y’know, like sitting on your face while thinking with and talking through, well y’know….”
    4th July Jill, win it back America!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The video of Trumpeter slamming CNN is so beneath the station of POTUS that I first wondered if it was ‘fake news,’ when I first heard the story.

    Hopefully Trumpeter will keep quiet tomorrow while America celebrates its birthday…he has no place in it!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Dear Jill,
    Presidents of the past have been frustrated with the press, but they have also affirmed its importance to our democracy.
    The free press, the right to peacefully protest, the right to express ourselves even when critical about our government are rights what make our country great and this is what DDT is trying to abolish. He is living in the wrong country. And during these rough times, I thank God for the free press.
    Hugs, Gronda

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  6. Jill, I think the CNN statement says it nicely. The President diminishes the office and America when he acts and says things that condone and promote violence. All along his worst enemy is not the media, it is the person looking back in the mirror when he shaves. Other leaders see him clearly for who he is and do not trust him. Keith

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  7. Presidential or not? From this perspective. There is at least a small nugget of truth from Mr. Trump. In that, the press is not free to print what it likes. When the mainstream press, is owned by six corporations. In fact most media outlets are controlled by just a few corporations. Governments dictate to the industry what and where to print their stories. The press is controlled. A few calls to Corporate HQ, likely spikes any story deemed embarrassing? The notion that press is favourable to us, the people, is erroneous. In Britain, they are controlled through the use of “D” notices. Which makes the internet the people’s friend. Now authority seeks to curb this. Calling things, as being “fake news”. I do not expect anyone to take notice of what is written here. Look for yourselves. https://www.freepress.net/ownership/chart
    The days of intrepid news reporters roaming any nation, are mostly all gone. Operation Desert Storm, blatantly told reporters you only print what we allow. These days. the news comes over the wire from Reuters, AP or whatever. Reporters do not go forth and gather anymore. It becomes the, “Ministry of Truth”. Where war, continual war, keeps the population numbed and fearful. Even people who regard themselves as Liberal Democrats. Are being manipulated. The previous 50 years has seen an assault on rational behaviour. Polarization when the two candidates will implement the similar policies. Policies of the bankers. The only thing differentiates, perhaps, is spin? The two candidates are related and come from the same colleges and wealthy backgrounds.
    Mr. Trump is caught up with Zionism. He is pledged to that cause. The neocons are the same neocons no matter if you call them Democrat or Republican. How is that for diversity of opinion?
    The USA is developing Greater Israel. As that country pushes it’s borders out. Owned by the same bankers that own the Federal Reserve and Bank of England. The Bank of Canada is a little different, yet so long as the PM is their man the changes will be pushed through. The same bankers own most of the world’s central banks. After Syria comes Iran. After Iran, Russia and China.
    I am continually amazed by the willingness of the ordinary to enter the theatres, as the foot soldiers. Then they are left to commit suicide, when their usefulness is over. Abandoned by their country, nursing wounds sustained. Exposure to depleted Uranium, Agent Orange, Wounds, whether they can be seen or not. Tomorrow bang the drums, wave the flags and party.

    Liked by 1 person

    • WHOA WHOA WHOA Jamie!!! You have set my head to spinning with all this! You have certainly given me some things to think about and to look into, though! This is one thing I love … I get different perspectives and learn from my readers. So with that said, I am going to think about this, check out the link you sent, look into a few other things you bring up, and hopefully come up with a reply in a day or two. And thanks … I really do love the exchange of information and making new friends who are thoughtful and make me think, sometimes in different ways … Cheers, Jamie!

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      • Interesting comments. To my way of thinking the disenfranchised have been used by all types of leaders and tossed aside throughout history. There is a missionary in Nigeria who lists with global poverty, overpopulation, climate change, etc. the equal major threat of corruption. Any help offered to people in need is pocketed by corrupt officials. The western world does it as well, but are more polished with campaign donations and lobbyists favors.

        Our news outlets have tended to be shallow, conflicted or biased. Even still, we would rather report on inane tweets instead of what is not being done about poverty or the assault on our environment.

        Good post and comments.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks, Jill. Yet, I am always hesitant, to appear to contradict the writer. It seems that the American public is polarized? Yet if one looks a bit deeper? It almost appears to be by design. People who supported Mr. Obama with his Medical coverage for the people. Is laudable. For many in the country have been both bankrupted or left to die through that absurd situation. It may be better now? I hope so?
        Canada has had a type of universal healthcare for many years now and it’s not perfect. The UK is under attack by the same conservatives, seeking to “privatize” the NHS.
        There’s gold in them thar’ hills of healthcare.
        Don’t even start with manipulations of pharmaceutical companies. Yet, Mrs. Obama or is is it Sotero? Made millions from her hospital boards.
        There are plenty of good people trying to get the news out. It makes MSM [main stream media] very afraid. For it undermines the narrative.
        A couple of links for some would be;
        http://www.globalresearch.ca/?context=home
        &
        http://hound1592.rssing.com/chan-65948187/all_p1.html
        Above all, always question, always ask. Personally, I am always reserved, when it comes to truth. Yet there are often undisputed facts, like the attack 50 years ago on USS Liberty and Maj. Gen. Smedley Butler from 1930’s.
        Cheers Jamie

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    • I know … I have stopped asking “what next” … better to just wait for it … never have to wait very long! Sigh. I wonder where it will end, and if any of us will have a shred of sanity left! Sigh.

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