Thursday, March 17, 2016

A Free Press

I didn't post yesterday as I attempted to evaluate, not only my position and mental condition of the current social and political arena but also that I am reluctantly immersed in the morass of this current campaign because of past professional interest.

I acknowledge that this is difficult for me because of my former journalistic profession.

Now having a day to assimilate and assess the Super Tuesday primaries and speeches, I am now ready to leave one last thought and then move back to the original premise of this blog. It is: make no judgements and as best as I can, offer alternative thoughts, solutions and noble ideas to the begging answers of today's difficult questions.

My last, at least for this moment in time, political observation, is this. Under a Trump administration, I fear for the press and the first amendment. He's making the press the fall-guy for his false statements. He corals the press to a pen in the back of his rallies and calls them "disgusting."

The press is not perfect, but a free press is necessary to speak reason to power. Walter Lippmann once said, " the theory of a free press is not that the truth will be presented completely or perfectly in any one account, but that the truth will emerge from free reporting and free discussion."

Adlai Stevenson said: "The free press is the mother of all our liberties and our progress under Liberty."

Thomas Jefferson said: "The only security of all is a free press."

E. P. Thompson said: "The foulest damage to our political life comes not from their 'secrets' which they hide from us, but from other little bits of half-truths and disinformation which they do tell us."

Joseph Pulitzer said: "A cynical, mercenary, demagogic press will produce in time a people as base as itself."

Here's a thought from my years of participation and observation of the press. The press is not immune to the laws that it administers to the rest of society, and biased reporting has its counterpart in biased listening.

We'll see how it goes.

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