USA: Shaky press freedom

Featured USA: Shaky press freedom

Journalists from major US media outlets were blocked from meeting with White House spokesman Sean Spicer.

This unprecedented incident happened last Friday, after they had been summoned to attend the press briefing.

The news was reported from NY by Presenter Carolina M. Adalid, who cited among those media outlets: The New York Times, BBC, Politico, Los Angeles Times and CNN.

According to Adalid, the event takes place in the context of the “war” the Trump administration is waging against press media.

She thinks, like many observers, that this official onslaught is increasing.

Last week’s unsuccessful meeting with spokesman Spicer has an informal character now and replaces the one usually carried out with questions and answers between the president’s press secretary and those “political correspondents”.

Carolina Adalid recalls that the setback of last Friday took place hours later that Trump lashed out again at the press.

According to her, he called them “fake news media”, the enemy of the American people.

Experts recall that this anti-journalistic crusade is not new, because he has carried it out since his stage as republican presidential pre-candidate.

Trump tries to soften the expression “enemies”, by saying it’s aimed at those who produce “fake news”.

He includes several sources, whose journalists were banned from covering the briefing with the presidential spokesman last Friday.

When did the head of state, who has been increasingly cornering the activity of his press men and women, speak like that?

Thus Carolina Adalid wrote, before an audience “that applauded his comments on the outlets”, which do not represent the people.

Other reports highlighted the attendance at the press briefing with Spicer of journalists from outlets with less scope and with more conservative style.

Also allowed to access the meeting were TV networks such as NBC, ABC, CBS and Fox News, as well as British Agency Reuters.

However, another official spokeswoman, Stephani Grisham, dared to deny there was a blockade on certain media outlets.

But, according to The Hill, a publication headquartered in Washington, also barred from attending, the White House handpicked the journalists.

Spokespeople from several organizations stated that some received invitations for the meeting, but others didn’t.

Carolina Adalid denounced that members of the Secret Service “asked” the journalists from the excluded news outlets to leave the area.

Two entities, The Associated Press (AP) and Times Magazine, decided not to participate at the briefing in solidarity with the barred outlets.

In addition, the White House Correspondents’ Association (WHCA) issued its rejection for the incident.

Jeff Mason, its president, told CNN: “We are not satisfied” how the meeting has been handled.

Dean Baquet, The New York Times executive editor, recalled that nothing like this has “ever” happened in his long history covering news under different governments”.

Washington’s propaganda has referred to freedom of the press and prosecuted other countries severely for many years.

But now, as a sample button, United States rigorously selects those who attend or not a meeting with the president’s spokesperson.

And this happens, when its links with the media are plunged into deep chaos, hence how a shaky democracy works.


Translated by Jorge Mesa Benjamin / Cubasi Translation Staff

Last modified onThursday, 02 March 2017 11:01

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