Media criticism of President Trump’s immigration policy reached a fever pitch this past week, as the president was demonized and called every name in the book, while some members of his administration and family were threatened and harassed.
In theory, it was all part of the immigration fight. In practice, it was one more opportunity for Trump-haters to launch extreme attacks against the president and those close to him.
The left hounded administration officials at restaurants and at home, which thrilled Univision anchor Jorge Ramos. Protestors confronted Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen while she was eating at a restaurant and at her home, while White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders was kicked out of a restaurant because she works for President Trump.
Far-left Splinter News tweeted out the personal cell phone number of White House senior adviser Stephen Miller, and a fading Hollywood star called for the president’s youngest son to be dragged from his mother and “put in a cage with pedophiles.”
That barely begins the hate-fest. Canadian comedy writer Pat Dussault apologized after tweeting what appeared to be a disturbing threat to Donald Trump Jr.’s 4-year-old daughter. “Don’t worry, we’re coming for Chloe, too,” he wrote.
Next, there was the widespread assault on U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Former “Sex and the City” star Cynthia Nixon – now seeking the Democratic nomination for governor of New York against Gov. Andrew Cuomo – called the officers a “terrorist organization.”
The anti-American “journalism” group Wikileaks posted a database of ICE officers. Open borders extremist and Border Angels Founder Enrique Morones told “The Beat With Ari Melber” on MSNBC: “Donald Trump, without a doubt, is pure evil.”
Then for the coup de grâce, New Yorker magazine staff writer and fact checker Talia Lavin tried to ruin the career of an ICE employee over a tattoo. She tweeted that she thought the elbow tattoo of wounded Marine veteran Justin Gaertner was a Nazi Iron Cross. Turns out, it was the symbol of his unit in Afghanistan, where this hero also lost both his legs.
Lavin resigned and apologized, but still found the gall to complain about ICE, which had complained about her. “I do not think it is acceptable for a federal agency to target a private citizen for a good faith, hastily rectified error,” she tweeted.
The media piled on all week. “Morning Joe” Co-host Mika Brzezinski declared: “If you vote for Trump, then you, the voter, you, not Donald Trump, are standing at the border, like Nazis.”
That’s not too different from what Rolling Stone writer Ana Marie Cox thought about a rally President Trump spoke to in Minnesota. She described it as “the way the end of democracy sounds.”
And in one last sign of the journalism apocalypse, Politico even dredged up one of Stephen Miller’s third-grade classmates to write an immigration article that was a ridiculous attempt at journalism, headlined "I Sat on the Other Side of Stephen Miller's First Wall."
But remember, there’s no media bias. None. Whatsoever.
2. This Is Fake News: CNN’s Senior Media Correspondent Brian Stelter said in January that President Trump averaged calling something “fake” at least once a day. There might be a good reason for that – the news media.
This past week, journalists delivered on two major examples of fake news. Both were so astonishingly egregious that it’s a wonder how many journalists stay employed. It’s almost as if facts don’t matter.
Time magazine continued to fill recycling bins with anti-Trump material. At least 10 of its 23 covers this year have targeted his administration. Five have depicted the president personally – from having his hair on fire to appearing as king. The latest cover showed the president looming over a crying immigrant child. The headline read: “Welcome to America.” The media went bonkers, with TV outlets pitching it as news.
Only it wasn’t.
Turns out the doctored image that merged Trump and the little girl as if they were standing together (they weren’t) was more than a little inaccurate. The girl was indeed separated from her mom – by about two feet.
Of course, the media loved the phony image. ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC and CNN all reported on it. “CBS This Morning” Co-host John Dickerson summed up the approval, referring to it as “an iconic – a now-iconic photo taken last week captured that girl as her mother was detained.”
It gets worse. The girl’s mother has been deported previously for illegal immigration. Time’s correction of the whole affair was laughably dishonest, admitting only that the “story misstated what happened to the girl in the photo.”
To its credit, CBS actually fact-checked the image. Correspondent David Begnaud warned viewers about the bogus cover: “You may have seen the photo, you may have shared it on social media. A lot of people have. And with it, there’s been a lot of misinformation that’s been spread.” For more on that “misinformation,” check out Daily Caller Media and Breaking News Editor Amber Athey’s piece.
That was more elaborate than what happened to former Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort. But the result was much the same. As President Trump spoke on immigration during an ABC News broadcast, a graphic at the bottom of the screen falsely proclaimed: “Manafort Pleads Guilty to 5 Charges of Manslaughter.” No one has ever accused Manafort of manslaughter.
The brain trust at error-prone ABC (admittedly, not brainy or trustworthy) was quick to release an apology. “There simply is no excuse for this sort of mistake,” it wrote saying network officials “are investigating” how it happened. At least, this time it wasn’t ABC News Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross tanking the entire stock market.
Washington Post Media Critic Eric Wemple crushed ABC in a story headlined: “In colossal error, ABC News reports that Paul Manafort ‘pleads guilty’ to manslaughter.” Wemple came up with three scenarios how it happened. The first two ended by calling it “a clear scandal with disciplinary implications.” The third version added “or perhaps law-enforcement implications.”
Do ABC lawyers get combat pay?