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Another dissenter? Richmond Times-Dispatch not "entirely comfortable" with press pile-on

As Twitchy has reported, formerly insufferable journalists are even more insufferable today after The Boston Globe coordinated hundreds of newspapers around the country to publish editorials scolding President Trump for his “fake news” rhetoric.


This isn’t a new complaint from the press, but this latest round seems to have been sparked by CNN’s Jim Acosta being greeted with a chant of 
“CNN sucks!” at a Trump rally in Tampa — obviously the crowd had been turned against the otherwise unbiased and trustworthy mainstream media by Trump’s rhetoric — there’s no other explanation.

The media should never be the story, but the Acosta thing really resonated. Politico’s Marc Caputo let the mask slip and tweeted after seeing the video of the rally, “If you put everyone’s mouths together in this video, you’d get a full set of teeth,” and Amy Siskind reported Eric Trump to Twitter after he retweeted the video, thus “encouraging violence against a journalist.”

If the media really wants a nemesis, it should look at Antifa, which literally attacked journalists covering the “Unite the Right” rally in D.C. Sunday. But they’re lefties, so they get a pass.

It seems The Los Angeles Times has company, though, in not jumping into the coordinated press effort with both feet. The Richmond Times-Dispatch did publish an editorial for #FreePress day, but the editors were not enthusiastic about the whole pile on.

Daniel Marans reports for the HuffPost:


To be clear, we mostly agree that the coordinated effort of hundreds of papers to censure the president is going to backfire. Here’s a bit of the Richmond Times-Dispatch’s take:

We are not, however, entirely comfortable with an organized one-day campaign aimed at one politician, for a couple of reasons.

First, Trump’s anti-press rhetoric is toothless and should be of little concern to a confident, competent news media. The president has not used the powers of his office to weaken the First Amendment. John Adams, on the other hand, persuaded Congress to pass the Sedition Act in 1798 making it a crime to publish “malicious” comments about the president or Congress. Several newspaper publishers were jailed. That’s what a true threat to freedom of the press looks like. President Trump has, as have almost of of his predecessors, used his bully pulpit to criticize the news media, though he has done so in more strident terms than most modern presidents.

Second, we are concerned that a unified editorial campaign aimed at the president will do as much harm as good, by confirming his supporters’ belief — sometimes justified — that most of the news media is unfairly arrayed against the president on all matters and issues.


Good call. First, the press is as free as it ever was; no one’s being censored. In fact, journalists are making their biases perfectly clear and feeling no repercussions from it, aside from a “CNN sucks” chant here and there.

And second, what better way to show there’s no coordinated media attack on the president than for hundreds of newspapers to coordinate editorials slamming him for criticizing the press?

Way to support a free press and the journalists who are barely hanging on working for the paper.


What’s the chance some journalists at all of these papers will realize if they just reported the news without bias, the criticism would die down?


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