Archive

Editorial: The real enemies of the people | TribLIVE.com
Editorials

Editorial: The real enemies of the people

390725gtrloriedit002103018
Dan Speicher | Tribune-Review
The intersection of Route 981 and Old Cemetery Road in Loyalhanna TownshipAmerican Legion Post 981 in South Greensburg, on Monday, Oct. 29, 2018.

Once again, President Trump has called journalists “ the Enemy of the People .”

He said it Monday morning, effectively erasing the statements of unity and support for the families and community decimated by the hateful attack Saturday on the Tree of Life synagogue where a gunman killed 11 people at a religious service and shot six more, including four armed police officers.

“There is great anger in our Country caused in part by inaccurate, and even fraudulent, reporting of the news. The Fake News Media, the true Enemy of the People, must stop the open & obvious hostility & report the news accurately & fairly. That will do much to put out the flame …,” he tweeted, picking up in his next post, “of Anger and Outrage and we will then be able to bring all sides together in Peace and Harmony. Fake News Must End.”

With 11 bodies waiting to be buried in Pittsburgh, the man who recently stood in front of a cheering crowd and called himself a nationalist is putting the blame on journalists.

Within hours, the third package bomb directed to CNN in a week was found in Atlanta even as a federal magistrate prepared to see the man arrested Friday for sending at least 13 packages, all to people who Trump has savagely disparaged from his phone.

The president is right. This has to end.

“Fake news” spreads conspiracy theories without proof.

“Fake news” hides its lack of facts with statements like “a lot of people are saying.”

“Fake news” creates fear with glee.

But questions that challenge are not fake just because they are unwelcome, and issues that need to be addressed are not hostile just because they are brought to light. “Inaccurate” does not mean “disliked,” and “fair” does not mean “friendly.”

Fake news is misdirection and “Wizard of Oz” artistry, and we may hate it, but in today’s political world, there are plenty of people who make their living spinning imaginary magic to distract others from what is going on right in front of them.

But shifting the focus off of 11 murdered martyrs in Squirrel Hill and the thousands of people who could have potentially been killed at any point along the path of a slew of pipe bombs? That’s a special kind of awful.

Peace and harmony, yes. We need that. We need to know that we are all in this together.

But that doesn’t mean we can’t have questions or disagreement, or that having different ideas is tantamount to assault and murder and an unthinking, callous disregard for the lives of those who don’t share exactly the same beliefs.

Harmony, after all, is not everyone singing the same part. It’s different parts, different notes, different voices, all finding their own way but coming together to make music more beautiful than any of them could be on their own.

So no, Mr. President, journalists are not the enemy of the people, and with the blood of our neighbors still splashed in a house of worship in our backyard, we reject that label.

The enemies of the people are all the dark things that drive people to kill. Hatred, fear, anger and their evil brethren.

We will not stop fighting them.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.