Sen. John McCain is taking a veiled swipe at President Donald Trump’s ongoing attack on the fourth estate, cautioning that “how dictators get started” is by shutting down the press.
The Republican Arizona senator, in an exclusive interview on Meet the Press airing Sunday, admitted that the relationship between the media and elected officials can sometimes be tense — highlighted by the Trump administration’s repeated sparring with reporters and the president calling news organizations “fake news.”
Half-jokingly, McCain said, “a fundamental part of that new world order was a free press. I hate the press. I hate you especially. But the fact is we need you.”
His defense of the media came in response to a Friday tweet from President Donald Trump in which he called certain news outlets “the enemy of the American People.”
What educated, informed people exist in an echo chamber, only hearing one side of an issue? Perhaps that is the root of Trump’s problem–his problem with inaccuracy and ignorance. He only listens to one side of an issue. How can the media be “the enemy of the American people?” This current time isn’t the only time in American history where the press brought down candidates, or elected officials.
Anthony Weiner, Richard Nixon, Gary Hart, Gary Condit all fell, and fell hard because of the press. That’s how we know things. Would we put any of this rogue gallery back where they feel they belong? I don’t think so.
Now I certainly don’t recommend elevating the paparazzi to a position of high esteem. The paparazzi is the free press gone bad. They invade privacy and often break the law for their own profit. However, most in the American press have standards and help educate the public.
Does the media ever advance a particular point of view? Sure. Both sides do (and everything in between). Once all truth is out there, people can form their own opinions. We need facts to form our opinions. Being able to distinguish between fact and opinion is a 4th grade SOL skill. Unfortunately, many people can’t distinguish between the two concepts.
Trump appears to disavow facts because he has such a difficult time telling the truth. He seems that he doesn’t like being challenged and he seriously doesn’t like having the “factoids” he presents questioned or challenged.