The term “fake news” is probably overused, but it’s hard to think of a better way to describe the shady reporting tactics that were used by major outlets this week, proving President Donald Trump’s point and demonstrating exactly why so many Americans distrust mainstream news.
After the president answered a question about murderous MS-13 gang members by calling them “animals,” the nation’s largest news sources tripped over themselves to report the story — but purposely mis-quoted or left out the context of Trump’s words, essentially lying about what he actually said.
“Complaining at the roundtable (meeting) about confusion between different levels of law enforcement, Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims brought up the violent gang Mara Salvatrucha, better known as MS-13,” explained CNN.
“There could be an MS-13 member I know about — if they don’t have a certain threshold, I cannot tell (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) about it,” Mims said.
In a response captured on video that was clearly a continuation of the MS-13 discussion, Trump used harsh words to describe these violent gang members.
“Speaking immediately after Mims, Trump said, ‘We have people coming into the country, or trying to come in — and we’re stopping a lot of them — but we’re taking people out of the country,'” CNN continued.
“You wouldn’t believe how bad these people are. These aren’t people. These are animals. And we’re taking them out of the country at a level and at a rate that’s never happened before,” Trump declared.
MS-13 is one of the most deadly gangs in Central America and, increasingly, the United States. Brutal rape, murder, dismemberment and even beheadings are shockingly common within this group, which originated in the slums of El Salvador.
In other words, almost every sane, law-and-order American would consider them “animals” — but not, it appears, some of the biggest media outlets in the United States.
“Several major media outlets stripped the context from Trump’s comments, publishing stories and posting tweets that strongly suggested he had said undocumented immigrants at large ‘aren’t people,’ but ‘animals,'” CNN summarized.
“In some cases, outlets that placed the comments in context in stories removed the context in tweets,” that source continued. When even CNN is embarrassed by how badly journalists mis-reported an anti-Trump story, you know they definitely stepped in the caca.
The New York Times, ABC News, NBC News and CBS News all ran misleading headlines that skewed Trump’s words to make it look like he was slamming immigrants as a whole, instead of criticizing a murderous criminal gang.
“Trump refers to some undocumented immigrants as ‘animals'” was the bold headline run by The Washington Post, purposely hiding the fact that he was talking about MS-13.
The New York Times was just as bad. “Trump lashed out at undocumented immigrants during a White House meeting, calling those trying to breach the country’s borders ‘animals,'” the once-respected newspaper declared on Twitter.
That’s lying. Trump didn’t “lash out at undocumented immigrants” at all; he spoke critically about one specific gang that is known to cross the border illegally as part of a vast criminal enterprise.
Even The Associated Press, previously seen as the gold standard of responsible reporting, was forced to delete a false tweet posted to its official social media account.
“AP has deleted a tweet from late Wednesday on Trump’s ‘animals’ comment about immigrants because it wasn’t made clear that he was speaking after a comment about gang members,” the outlet sheepishly admitted on Thursday.
“We got caught lying about what the president said” might have been a more honest message to post.
Remember, the entire conversation is on video. It would have taken less than a minute for news outlets — including major players like the AP and The New York Times — to confirm the quote and report it accurately. This is Journalism 101.
Instead, almost every mainstream media outlet ditched honesty and accuracy in favor of making Trump look bad. Reporting what someone said, with context, is journalism. Hiding that context to purposely damage a president is political activism.
Amazingly, mainstream outlets still can’t understand why Americans distrust them and are turning to alternative sources in droves.
Maybe they should take a long look in the mirror.
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