The Trump administration has had a turbulent relationship with the press ever since President Donald Trump took office and he has accused multiple news organization of spreading “fake news.”
However, the president has been particularly scathing of CNN. Now, his supporters are following suit as they mercilessly heckled CNN’s Jim Acosta at a presidential rally in Tampa Bay, Florida.
The journalist was fulfilling his duties and was reporting live from the venue. That is when a crowd of around fifty people turned at him and chanted, “CNN sucks,” “traitor” and “you're a liar” while displaying Trump supporting placards.
The supporters had also written “CNN sucks” on Make America Great Again signs.
Despite the distraction and continuous heckling by the crowd, Acosta didn’t stop. He kept reporting live from the venue and completed his job.
Trump hadn’t arrived at the venue when the incident took place. However, he endorsed the action by retweeting his son, Eric Trump’s, tweet that showed the crowd booing Acosta and chanting “CNN sucks” along with #truth.
The CNN reporter clapped back at the president’s son and replied back saying, “No Eric. Not the truth. And you know better.”
The Trump administration has not had the best relationship with media outlets. He has slammed Acosta, individually, as well as the entire network on many occasions. He has dubbed CNN “dishonest” and labeled them one of the “fake news media” outlets he regularly lambasts.
The president has ignored questions from Acosta in the past. He has also tweeted a mock video of himself tackling and repeatedly striking a man with a CNN logo super-imposed in place of his head, followed by a logo saying "Fraud News Network."
A similar heckling incident took place recently when the CNN reporter was heckled by supporters of Trump at his rally in West Columbia, South Carolina.
However, it is important to note that if Trump and his supporters don’t agree with what CNN, and other media outlets for that matter, report and how they cover Trump’s presidency, it doesn’t mean they can distract them from doing their jobs.
Freedom of press is a fundamental aspect of democracy.
However, Trump’s constant attacks on the press and disregard of journalists, from certain media outlets, is nothing but prove of his insecurity.
Moreover, these supporters who blindly follow Trump do pose a threat to such reporters who cover events where they are surrounded by these people.
In Trump’s America media freedom is clearly in jeopardy.
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