To the Editor:
Since President Trump made his “fake news” statement — a specific reaction to the dishonest, weakly-sourced, and overtly hostile reporting of his weeks-old administration, not a general statement about the media — there has been much hand wringing and indignant outrage but, to his point, little journalism. Pat Caddell, hardly a member of the vast right-wing conspiracy, made the same assertion in 2012, speaking before a group of journalists at an Accuracy in Media meeting. Video of his talk is readily available on YouTube.
The media commit malpractice when they place their collective thumbs on the scale in support of any agenda other than honest reportage. The press are not above reproach when their reporting is corrupt, and the First Amendment isn’t a license to lie; it protects the tellers of truth. Willful omission of facts or context is dishonest and journalists who willfully mislead the public in service of their personal agendas are, indeed, enemies of free people.