#FreePress takes Twitter by storm

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In response to President Trump's threat to free press, newspapers across the country wrote editorials Thursday condemning his attacks.— Graphic courtesy The New York Times

The MV Times participated in the #FreePress movement, publishing an editorial today along with more than 300 newspapers across the country fighting back against the assault on the media by President Donald Trump and his supporters.

The idea was launched by the Boston Globe, which has collected and published excerpts from some of the editorials written across the country today.

“This relentless assault on the free press has dangerous consequences,” the Globe wrote. “We asked editorial boards from around the country — liberal and conservative, large and small — to join us today to address this fundamental threat in their own words.”

Other newspapers involved included the New York Times, which wrote, “These attacks on the press are particularly threatening to journalists in nations with a less secure rule of law, and to smaller publications in the United States, already buffeted by the industry’s economic crisis. And yet the journalists at those papers continue to do the hard work of asking questions and telling the stories that you otherwise wouldn’t hear.”

The #FreePress has been trending on Twitter most of the day, and it’s not just journalists weighing in on the movement.

Rep. Joseph Kennedy III, whose family hasn’t exactly been handled with kid gloves by the press, tweeted, “A #FreePress reflects our own words and actions for the world to see. So if you don’t like the story being written, maybe you should change the story being told.”

“The best way to show the public that we are not ‘the enemy’ is by telling accurate, fair, truthful stories. By showing that we care about the people and communities we cover. By acting ethically at all times,” the Society of Professional Journalists tweeted.

Newspapers from coast to coast and states in between have joined the effort. “Our current president attacks hard. He’s proud of it. He holds nothing back, he says, in going against those who threaten him. That worked at one point as a New York real estate developer. But as leader of this country, the public looks at those words differently. For some, that speech becomes so much gospel, a guide to understanding the world,” the Topeka-Capital Journal wrote.

Of course, Trump took to Twitter to make his case: “The Boston Globe, which was sold to the the Failing New York Times for 1.3 BILLION DOLLARS (plus 800 million dollars in losses & investment), or 2.1 BILLION DOLLARS, was then sold by the Times for 1 DOLLAR. Now the Globe is in COLLUSION with other papers on free press. PROVE IT!”

Trump supporters also took aim at the press. “I am all for a #FreePress, but these days the media is nothing but a puppet with strings being pulled by the democrat party,” wrote RD.

Among the newspapers taking up the #FreePress cause was the Long Beach Post.

“It’s problematic, and a little embarrassing, to have to insist that we, the press, are not the enemy of the American people,” the newspaper wrote. “But we find ourselves in the awkward position of having to urge many people to believe it, because the accusation comes directly from the president of the United States, a man admired still — still — by millions of Americans.”

The New England Newspaper Association published links to all of the New England editorials here.

19 COMMENTS

    • How do you know how much energy people put into political issues, did you get that from the NYT. Being a gun owner I put great value in a free media. What we have now is a lazy media dominated by huge corporations where profit not truth is the priority. It costs money to research real stories to sent reporters out to talk to people, it is far more profitable to just print a story with Trump in it. The thing that scares me is that so many people have been taken in by this distraction. The main stream media or corporate media no longer respects the intelligence of the American people to understand complex issues or to have the attention span to want to. I want to know about: the environment, economy, Turkey, Europe, South China Sea, the weather, why the health and education rankings of Americans keeps dropping verse the rest of the world. All I get is Trump, Trump, Trump so intellectually boring, like processed food but sooooo profitable.

  1. Really? Im not necessarily a Trump supporter but the vehement and negative news against him is unprecedented. If you don’t have have anything nice to say don’t say it. Regarding the New York Times that was referenced in this article does anyone really read the NYT anymore? In today’s digital world they are irrelevant. See I just broke my saying I didn’t have anything nice to say re: the NYT. As Thomas Nast the political cartoonist 120 years ago = Nasty.

      • I like my Press to report NEWS. This collective bashing of our President is uncalled for and quite frankly, an embarrassment. I understand this is a very liberal island but we expect our local paper to stand above this type of political gang mentality. We have always been a welcoming melting pot so let’s not let our local rag tell us we now must be divided over political views. Our community newspaper should be above this partisan nonsense. Very disappointed.

        • I think the real disappointment is that so many folks fall for the “fake news” line from the President. It’s not fake news that more than a dozen officials associated with Trump and his campaign have been indicted and/or plead guilty, with at least two already serving jail time. Virtually everything the President calls fake news is most certainly real news. That so many of his followers fall for it hook line and sinker is what is terribly embarrassing. There was never anything endearing about Donald Trump. He has almost no leadership qualities but that didn’t matter because you were told by the news media for years that Clinton was a criminal. Of course Hillary was completely exonerated but not before the damage was done and now we must all endure the childish and truly divisive twitter rants of a xenophobic narcissist named Donald Trump.

          • Hillary was completely exonerated? Trump with almost no leadership qualities managed to get his name on countless buildings and create a brand recognized world wide? And throw in a few insults for good measure. Real news uses research and facts, Vanadium you’re pretty good at producing fake news.

    • Thomas Nast was a political satirist/cartoonist who focused on corruption, slavery, and the Civil War.

      The NYT is also read digitally more than ever.
      Trump tweets something nasty daily about someone in the Administration. a World Leader, or someone in entertainment and the press simply report on what he writes.
      So what exactly is your point?

    • seacoast– reporting what trump says and does is not vehement and negative news– it is the news.
      sorry–,but if trump is vehement and negative , the free press will do it’s job and report it.
      Great piece, George. Thanks—

    • hanley— my e mail address is you often talk here about the fake news. So we don’t clog this forum up with off topic stuff , could you please send me links to the so called Fake news that you speak of— anyone reading this— please send me some things you think are fake news that are posted by the liberal media — I promise that when I reply , I will not mention “pizzagate” — even though that was not a breaking story from cnn.

      • hanley— ok the times will not put my e mail address up here— look for clues in my next few post — like “dk” ( for don keller ) apparently I can publish my name

      • hanley— when i was a teenager, I often got into some minor trouble trouble, and my father would put his head in his hands, and say “dondondon” while picking me up at the police station.

  2. There are people who need the last word so badly they could be driving through the rain in a car with no windshield wondering why it’s so windy and they’re all wet.
    See, doesn’t make sense either….

  3. I think the press has allot of soul searching to do. With the rise of right-wing only news sources in the 90’s the credibility of the news media at large has been steadily eroded. It’s turns out that free speech isn’t free, it is very expensive. After media consolidation and the creation of Fox News in the 90’s it seems the soul of the news media has been sold to the highest bidder. This slants all news reporting towards the narratives that those who fund the news want told.

    What story of major importance has the news media at large reported in the last 30 years that generated any sort of real lasting justice. In my opinion the press has been detrimental to justice in this time frame. The media conglomerates, failed to tell the story in the run up to the war in Iraq and hundreds of thousands of men, women and children died on a battlefield. ISIL took power in the vacuum of smoldering rubble we left behind, a group we are still fighting today. Or how about the blanket coverage of Hillary Clinton’s emails, or Benghazi? That was the most cursory reporting by a news media obviously colluding to slow the momentum of her election campaign. After years of investigations into Hillary turned up nothing, the news media never turned their attention to he corrupt officials in Congress or at the FBI who all sought to destroy her credibility.

    I fear it’s now too late to go back. The balance routines so prevalent in the news media that pit well known facts against superficial opinions does great disservice to the welfare of the people. The Republican Party is a Party of televangelists, and unfortunately for our nation, the people who vote for them are glued to the TV. It’s not only that the news media needs to stand up to the bullying originating from the White House, they need to stand up to the bullies in their own industry. I’m not going to hold my breath for any substantive changes in the news media. In the free-press, money talks. #freepress #stopselllingout

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