With President Donald Trump ramping up his attacks on the free press in recent weeks, more than 300 local and national newspapers across the country on Thursday took the suggestion of a Boston Globe editor, penning editorials to rebuke Trump’s frequent claim that journalists are “the enemy of the people.”
“The dirty war on the free press must end,” wrote deputy editorial page editor Marjorie Pritchard in her call to newsrooms. “The impact of Trump’s assault on journalism looks different in Boise than it does in Boston. Our words will differ. But at least we can agree that such attacks are alarming.”
Large-circulation publications including the New York Times, the Miami Herald, and the Globe all took part, and hundreds of smaller city and regional newspapers nationwide also agreed to defend the free press with their own editorials.
Just a small sampling of the editorials ran by newspapers follows:
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At the Poynter Institute, editor and longtime journalist Al Tompkins wrote a column supportive of the response to Trump’s rhetoric from newsrooms across the country—and urged journalists to also focus on improving the field’s ability to accurately report on the diverse viewpoints and experiences of the American public:
By 9:00am Eastern time, the coordinated message already appeared to have angered Trump, as he tweeted one of his most direct attacks on journalists yet, calling the media “the opposition party”—a belief that he has frequently alluded to but had not previously stated explicitly.