Holding a ‘Go Donald!’ Media Accountable for ‘Normalizing Extremism’


Janine Jackson | FAIR | January 23, 2016

Great Britain won’t actually ban Donald Trump from the country but Parliament did spend time taking seriously what was called Trump’s “poisonous, corrosive” effect on public discourse. At the same time, actors, writers and others, including Harry Belafonte, Eve Ensler and Noam Chomsky, launched a Stop Hate Dump Trump campaign, that included serving notice to media that they “are accountable for normalizing Trump’s extremism by treating it as entertainment, by giving it inordinate and unequal air time and by refusing to investigate, interrogate or condemn it appropriately.”

For some journalists, this might provoke questions: Reporters can’t ignore public figures, but is there daylight between covering news of a person and providing them a near-constant, legitimizing megaphone?

For media executives, though, the main question seems to be: What time does the bank open?

The Intercept on Les Moonves

CBS chief Les Moonves in The Intercept (12/10/15): “This is fun, watching this, let them spend money on us, and we love having them in there.”

I’m thinking of a report from December by Lee Fang at The Intercept (12/10/15), about how, with visions of campaign ad dollars sparkling in his eye, CBS chief executive Les Moonves cheered on Trump’s candidacy at an investor presentation: “The more they spend, the better it is for us, and: Go Donald! Keep getting out there!”

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