June 18, 2019 | 65° F

EDITORIAL: President has (press)ing issues at play

Sen. McCain’s comments hint at frightening warning about Trump


It is not uncommon for people to dislike the press — especially those who have political influence. The press is constantly pushing for more information and is the source behind any news that may negatively affect the image of politicians. President Donald J. Trump, known for criticizing the press, took it upon himself to publicly denounce news outlets via his favorite way of addressing the citizens of the United States of America — Twitter.

In a Twitter post, Trump named several news organizations — including The New York Times, NBC, ABC, CBS and CNN — as being part of the “fake news media.” He then continued to label these major news organizations as “failing” and said that they were the “(enemies) of the American people.”

But Trump was not the only one who voiced his concerns about the press to the public. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) also spoke out about the press, but his words were in support of the press — and could even be taken as a strike at Trump.

McCain appeared on NBC, one of the news outlets Trump denounced, and stressed the importance of the press despite his disliking. He expressed his fear of losing “individual liberties” without the press and dauntingly explained how the suppression of the press is “how dictators get started.”

McCain’s words are crucial, and they are something the American public needs to hear, but his words are too few and not backed up with enough action. Even when Trump was on his campaign trail for the election, McCain refused to answer questions about then-Presidential nominee Donald J. Trump until the next calendar year. It may be understandable that McCain would not want to put down a fellow member of the Republican Party, but for the sake of the country it is important for him to blatantly point out what wrongs are being committed. In fact, even the Democratic Party itself is not doing enough to speak up and halt the misdemeanors that Trump is responsible for.

Trump is adamant in naming news outlets that he believes are “fake,” but what about all of the information he has publically broadcasted that had no factual standing? What about when Trump confidently announced that he had the biggest electoral margin since former President Ronald Reagan, when every president after Reagan, except for George W. Bush, won more Electoral College votes than Trump? What about just recently when Trump spoke about the dangers of immigrants referencing an imaginary incident that never occurred “last night in Sweden?” Trump seems to hold steadfast on his beliefs that news outlets — one being The New York Times, which gained 41,000 subscriptions after his election — are providing faulty information when he is the one giving out the most bias and misinformation.

As for Trump himself and his comments, McCain’s words may not fall far from accurate. Trump’s constant insults to the media and journalists are not only upsetting professionals in these fields, but blatantly scaring them. Journalists and members of the press and media are afraid to do their jobs because they either identify with a specific religion or race Trump’s campaign rhetoric criticized, or are afraid their freedom will be taken away from them. By limiting and biasing the powers of the press and media, citizens of the United States have no one to rely on to provide them with information except for Trump and his administration himself — and we can see how problematic that would be.

The Daily Targum's editorials represent the views of the majority of the 149th editorial board. Columns, cartoons and letters do not necessarily reflect the views of the Targum Publishing Company or its staff.

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