The President & The Fourth Estate…

The Fourth Estate, the press, is having some difficulties with President Trump.  The essence of the difficulties is quite simple.  President Trump does not hold all the members of the Fourth Estate in the same high esteem with which they hold themselves.

The press, of course, decries any perceived mistreatment as a violation of its rights.  President Trump decries these people for their sometimes lack of truthfulness, and their habit of not naming their sources when certain charges are leveled.

This might be seen as a balance that was envisioned by our forefathers as this country was being created.  There are points to be made on both sides of this disagreement…this argument.  Of course, there has been the occasional confrontation probably more so with President Trump than any other that comes readily to mind.  I would submit that the press has earned some of the chastisement that it is now receiving, and I would also indicate my belief that the press is not always the ‘angel of truth’ it would have us all blindly believe it to be.

The press does not take kindly to criticism seemingly because it believes it never deserves any criticism.  It does not take kindly to being called out as this President is wont to do.  Things have changed and the press is having significant difficulty dealing with the change…especially when it originates from a person sitting in an office for which they generally see him as being unqualified.  It is also possible they are decidedly liberal in their leanings and that this is part of their professed aggravation with President Trump.

Most members of this group, the press, have decided political leanings.  Some of the leanings are very pronounced.  Few of the political inclinations of the press are favorable to the conservative persuasion.  Actually, most leanings of this group are decidedly liberal when we get right down to where the rubber meets the road.

Were I President Trump, I would be giving quite a bit of thought to inviting members of the press whom I think I can trust to present an unbiased version of the story into the Oval office for a quiet back and forth on essential issues.  Let the Fourth Estate come to understand that it is dealing with a person not easily given to being reviled with ink on newsprint when there is a political bias to the “news”.  I could count the news organizations on one hand that I believe are capable of an even handling of news and fewer with a true conservative leaning.

The saying employed by a venerable newspaper, “All the news that’s fit to print” tells the story.  For way too long the print media, and now the press in all it forms, has determined that it alone knows what the truth looks like and it guards, jealously, the sole right to tell us what that truth is.

The pomposity of this Fourth Estate is not well taken by President Trump.  I suspect that he believes he will be pilloried no matter how he acts or what he says, so why should he waste any time on trying to avoid that.

Of course, fake news lies at the bottom of this kerfluffle.  That might be defined as actually fake news as well as news not quite as full of the truth as it should’ve been.  Or even as news carefully constructed so as to be truthful but also damning at the same time even when there is no blame to be assigned truth be told.

The press is unaccustomed to having its feet held to the fire.  That is driving this latest tirade and President Trump is probably willing to weather whatever storm this brings about if for no other reason than to show the press that he is at least it’s equal…and that he should be treated as such.

The press is potentially at a crossroads.  It is taking on not only the sitting President, who is unaccustomed to losing any fight, it is taking on we the people who elected this president at the same time that we the people are excited about all the venues we now have available for purposes of gathering our news.

There is an oldie but goodie that goes like this:  choose your battles wisely.

The press would be wise to remember that with this person sitting in the Oval office.  This is not the typical Casper Milquetoast politician that the press is used to bullying.  This is also a time when we have sources for our news needs that haven’t before existed in the fashion and number that is the case today.

 

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