This past week, the President of the United States, Donald Trump, attacks journalists everywhere by saying that the media is “the enemy of the people.” I’m sure we are all familiar with the term “fake news” as the president has used many times, but Trump has taken his term too far. According to Sun Sentinel, ‘“Fake news” is becoming a term lobbed by anyone who wants to discredit reporting that conflicts with their beliefs or self-interests.”
Journalists have always been there to be “the watchdogs” of the media, documenting everything going on in today’s news. Just like a mailman, a teacher, or even a doctor who is as committed to their job as a journalist is. It’s what we do and even the slightest bit of criticism from a person that holds so much power, is frustrating.
The First Amendment states: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” This clearly states that it is unconstitutional to limit the freedom of the press or even the freedom of speech. According to Sun Sentinel, “The scrutiny, answers and accountability that can come from good reporting are made possible by the First Amendment to the Constitution, which the president, at his inauguration, swore to defend.”
The President is also very familiar with the social media platform, Twitter, where he tweets out his campaign and updates the country on his whereabouts. On August 5, 2018 Trump tweeted: “The Fake News hates me saying that they are the Enemy of the People only because they know it’s TRUE. I am providing a great service by explaining this to the American People. They purposely cause great division & distrust. They can also cause War! They are very dangerous & sick!” Clearly, the President is too immature to understand that things will be said about him that he doesn’t exactly agree with. It is all about how he handles the media that makes it seem like he is worthy of this government position. The way Trump usually handles ‘fake news” is unacceptable.
The Jamesville-DeWitt School District has high standards when it comes to their newspaper, RamPage. Our town expands over multiple areas and it would be challenging to cover everything that goes on, but we do our best. We are told not to copy other people’s words and follow a lot of rules regarding how a newspaper is supposed to be written. Without the press, our school and our town would be at a loss for nobody would know what is happening unless people spread news through talking. Parents at home find our school newspaper to be very useful because they can understand what is happening at their child’s school.
Yes, it is true that journalists sometimes mess up and most of the time when they do, they hold themselves accountable for it. Just like everyone else…they are humans and humans make mistakes. So sometimes something may not be true and it could be considered “fake news”, then you fix the error and move on.
According to Sun Sentinel, “Our country’s leader shouldn’t be making it easier for dictators to harass and silence journalists in places where freedom of the press remains a dream.” Some people look up to President Donald Trump, and when they see that their role model is bashing and taunting journalists, they are going to see that it is okay to do the same to other people and I think we all know that it is not. Our President is out of control with the way he handles situations he does not like, and it needs to stop.