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Editorial: ‘Fake news’ rhetoric damages our democracy

The Journal

Fake news” has been a staple of President Donald Trump’s campaign and subsequent time in the White House, and his use of that and similar terms to ostracize the media has increased recently. Now, he and members of his administration have gone so far as to brand the media “the enemy of the people.”

Painting all media with a broad brush of “fake news” is inaccurate and harmful. The purposes and styles of national and local outlets differ greatly, as do potential problems. In all media, mistakes are made and there have been instances of inaccurate reporting and biased language against political stances and figures. The cries of “fake news” have now gone beyond inaccuracies and fictitious politically motivated stories — like those Russia spread on social media to meddle in our 2016 election — and morphed into a reason to attack outlets big and small for any reporting one finds unsavory.

This attitude of rejecting fact-based news because it doesn’t line up with one’s opinion or preference coming from the leader of our nation has spread, leading to proclamations of “fake news” from Capitol Hill to King Street.

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