Few people have benefited from media coverage to the degree that President-Elect Donald Trump has. From the day Trump announced he was running, the media has covered his every action, granting him far more exposure than other candidates. That relationship has now come full circle, resulting in a heated meeting with media execs and a demand for a “media reset“.
As for motivation, ratings equal money, so corporate media gladly paraded Trump’s shocking rhetoric across the airwaves day after day, invariably paving him a road to the White House.
During the last crucial months of the election, a PR bomb came out that singlehandedly turned the media against Trump.
“…Grab em by the pussy.”
At Odds with the Media
Admittedly, Trump has not made a move without the media commenting on it, often in unflattering ways. That said, the appointments of outspoken racists like Steve Bannon, and controversial politicians like Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), just add fuel to the fire for an angry populace.
It’s easy to see why the media would be at odds with Trump. No matter the source, media is diverse and dependent on sponsors, so any ideology that offends entire groups of people is typically not aligned with mainstream news networks.
It doesn’t take much to villainize a candidate when he’s making angry, fear-mongering sound bites on a daily basis.
Trump Requests a Media Reset
Inviting executives from at least five major networks, Trump did not hold back when scolding the media for their supposedly biased coverage of his administration. According to a source who witnessed the meeting, Trump had the most vitriol when addressing CNN.
The source reported Trump saying
“We’re in a room of liars, the deceitful dishonest media who got it all wrong.”
This sentiment summed up his message to the media executives.
Ultimately, the theme of the meeting was clear: Trump was requesting a paradigm shift in the way he’s portrayed in the media.
What are the Ramifications of a Media Reset?
In an interview on MSNBC’s Morning Joe Monday, Kellyanne Conway claimed that Trump received an “unprecedented deluge” of criticism from major media outlets. She says the spirited meeting was necessary because Trump and the media have “joint custody” of the nation.
The implication is that major networks like MSMBC and CNN were biased against Trump, rather than simply reporting news that people care about.
If media outlets decided to only show positive stories about Trump, there is no doubt it would ease his transition into the White House.
However, for a political leader to influence the way the media covers news would be a clear violation of the First Amendment, an amendment that guarantees freedom of the press.
Also notable is that there were no complaints about the media when Trump was using it to defeat candidates like Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and former Governor Jeb Bush (R-Fla.) in the Republican Primary.
While most of the other candidates faded together with their similar talking points, Trump received non-stop media coverage and rose to the top with ease.
If there were efforts being made to support human rights, it would be easy to feel sorry for Trump. But with his recent appointees looking like the Mount Rushmore of wealthy racists, a strong, unbiased media may be our only defense against the Trump administration.
Let’s hope that of all the things available to a billionaire in this country, that control over the media is not one of them.
Check out this recent news report all about Trump’s supposed media reset: