A ‘Sirius’ Problem: From #WokeAF to Silenced
The late Senator John McCain once said, “When you look at history, the first thing that dictators do is shut down the press.” The assault on free speech and the truth isn’t happening in a vacuum. It is spreading like a cancer around the globe. In a recent piece in the New York Times entitled: The Growing Threat to Journalism Around the World, A.G. Sulzberger, the author, and publisher of the New York Times, outlines how Trump’s hate for the press is catching fire around the globe with other authoritarian world leaders using his catch phrase “fake news” as they seek to imprison, murder, and silence journalists who are working to inform the public. According to this piece last year was the most dangerous year for journalists, with dozens killed and imprisoned, not to mention harassed and threatened into silence.
The Republican Party’s assault on the truth has continued to ratchet up over the last few years, with Trump being their chosen Liar-in-Chief. Consequently, what we are learning (on what feels like a monthly basis at times) is that these lies, and fear mongering are like catnip for the unhinged. As Trump continued to rail against his political opponents and favorite media target CNN, Cesar Sayoc, an avid Trump supporter from south Florida, mailed explosives to 13 prominent Democrats, as well as to CNN HQ. It was no coincidence that the people and media outlet targeted by Sayoc were notable Trump foes.
Unfortunately, Sayoc wouldn’t be the last domestic terrorist to use Trump’s words as inspiration to reign down terror on the public. The White House, normally a place we associate with transparency and patriotism, has shut its doors, with this administration using its power to throw members of the press out of the White House for not liking their questioning of the president or the outlets they hail from, like what was done to Jim Acosta from CNN. With Trump’s rhetoric against the press on a consistent level 10, his rallies have become increasingly hostile to the media, with some even going so far as to inflict bodily harm on journalists.
I myself have experienced this kind of repression — albeit non-physical — firsthand. Just recently I was told my services were no…