With all of the recent attacks on CNN by Donald Trump, I have to ask one question: Why the hell are liberals playing defense? It might seem like the media’s left arm is sending one salvo after another, but the corrective response shouldn’t negate the aggressive response Democrats should master. It’s not for want of ammunition, either. Fox News has peddled many conspiracy theories, such as Birtherism and The Seth Rich Murder.
While Trump uses the Bully Pulpit to terrorize CNN, CNN often times is playing defense, adopting an overly-apologetic tone for a problem that is rampant within the hallowed halls of Fox News. So, how does one offer a course correction while also maintaining an aggressive stance, something that apparently is increasingly important in America’s slide into authoritarianism?
Look at the Arpaios of this world? The Trumps, etc. While one would hope liberals shouldn’t support their equivalents of these individuals, it seems that the left needs something a bit more aggressive, which would naturally extend to the media. The right is bolstered by “strong” (steamrolling white nationalists, etc) personalities like the former sheriff and our POTUS. In the absence of these dominating personalities, you at least need a strong, binding strategy that can push back the Fox News tide. For instance, taking a corrective course while lampooning Fox News at every opportunity would be a great start (I mean, in a highly consistent, steamroller-y way). Birtherism is still alive today. So, instead of pushing conspiracy theories like Fox, CNN simply needs to push the facts in a certain direction, or deliver them in a certain way. Fox comes across as incredibly authoritarian in its reporting style, which is the atmosphere that America finds itself in.
Not only does Fox News seem immune to being criticized for perpetuating conspiracies, they are often congratulated for it. As a result, CNN looks like it’s playing defense despite hurling mud over the castle wall while Fox News isn’t forced to change anything. Don’t get me wrong, I like CNN, but even a free press can be suppressed because of the current cultural climate, or learn to suppress itself, which is a hallmark of authoritarian states.
CNN is at a severe disadvantage to Fox News because of an extremely aggressive President. Time to turn back the tide?