On Tuesday evening, CNN’s Christiane Amanpour received an award from the Committee to Protect Journalists and proceeded to warn the audience of the “existential crisis” that journalists are facing because of President-elect Donald Trump.
“I feel we face an existential crisis, a threat to the very relevance and usefulness of our profession,” the veteran journalist said. Amanpour described being “chilled” after reading Trump’s first post-election tweet which stated that “professional protesters [were] incited by the media.” She went on to lump Trump in with foreign dictators and their relationships with the press:
“We’re not there [yet], but postcard from the world: This is how it goes with authoritarians like Sisi, Erdoğan, Putin, the Ayatollahs, Duterte, et al. As all the international journalists we honor in this room tonight and every year know only too well: First the media is accused of inciting, then sympathizing, then associating — until they suddenly find themselves accused of being full-fledged terrorists and subversives. Then they end up in handcuffs, in cages, in kangaroo courts, in prison — and then who knows?”
This is what Amanpour expects under a Trump administration.
So, she made this call to her fellow journalists: “Recommit to robust fact-based reporting without fear nor favor — on the issues. Don’t stand for being labeled crooked or lying or failing. Do stand up together — for divided, we will all fall.”
Yet, this is the same journalist whose mantra is: “I believe in being truthful, not neutral.”
Amanpour’s liberal bias is well documented, but she didn’t get very far into her speech before making it crystal clear when she described the 2016 election. She spoke of “the exceptionally high bar put before one candidate and the exceptionally low bar put before the other candidate.”
“Like so many around the world,” she added, “I was shocked… because very few ever imagined that so many Americans conducting their sacred duty in the secret ballot box, using their ballot, would be so angry as to ignore the wholesale denigration of these values––vulgarity of language, the sexual predatory behavior, the deep misogyny, the bigoted and the insulting views.”
She apparently didn't get the message that insulting 60 million Americans about how they voted is why so many distrust journalists for constantly categorizing them negatively.
Amanpour’s call for integrity insisted that journalism not be “weaponized” but that it “must fight against normalization of what is unacceptable.”
She ended her speech quoting civil rights leader and current Democratic Congressman John Lewis, “‘Young people, and people not so young, have a moral obligation and a mission and a mandate to get into good trouble.’ So, let’s go out there and get into some good trouble. And especially, let’s fight to remain relevant and useful.”
Good luck with that mission.