NBC’s Chuck Todd says it’s time for his peers in the media to “start fighting back” against a “50-year campaign to delegitimize the press.”
The host of “Meet the Press” took to the pages of The Atlantic this week to offer a call to arms against “Rush Limbaugh, Matt Drudge, and the trio of Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson, and Laura Ingraham,” among others who have been “exploiting the fears of older white people” for years.
Mr. Todd says he is tired of staying silent while President Trump’s “echo chamber” continues the work of former President Richard Nixon’s “angry foot soldiers.”
“There’s a new kind of campaign underway, one that most of my colleagues and I have never publicly reported on, never fully analyzed, and never fully acknowledged: the campaign to destroy the legitimacy of the American news media,” the journalist wrote Monday for a piece titled, “It’s Time for the Press to Stop Complaining — And to Start Fighting Back.”
The op-ed zeroes in on deceased Fox News Channel chief executive Roger Ailes and media mogul Rupert Murdoch for manipulating the American people.
“If you hear something over and over again, you start to believe it, particularly if the charge is unrebutted,” Mr. Todd said. “The Trump team now keeps pounding this message, compounding the challenge. And the president faces little penalty with his voters, no matter how disparagingly he talks about the press corps; it’s precisely what Ailes conditioned them to believe.
“I’m not advocating for a more activist press in the political sense, but for a more aggressive one,” he continued. “That means having a lower tolerance for talking points, and a greater willingness to speak plain truths. … The challenge for viewers and readers is this: Ask yourself why someone is so determined to convince you not to believe your lying eyes.”
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