There are many debates happening now in #mybackyard….the loudest handful include:
Should Twitter ban Donald Trump?
Should politicians boycott the Inauguration?
Should the public, who are Anti-Trump “not watch” the peaceful transition of power, that is the inauguration?
Should the media fight back against this President who, clearly, wants to manage all messages and will deny access to those who push with questions he disapproves of?
There is so much flying around right now it’s getting difficult to even think through all of the noise. Let’s begin on these five questions:
Should Twitter ban Trump. No. As much I wish he would go away — it’s up to US, the public and the media, to stop reacting and promoting his twitter rants. (I blocked him 6 months ago and still I see almost every tweet!) It’s on my feed via re-tweets and it’s on my local, national and international news programs. The responsibility lays with us. I highly recommend reading Dan Rather’s “News and Guts” — this new project discusses many things including media and how we might wade through much of the murky Trump messages and miss-steps. Rather’s take on social media’s responsibility in Trump becoming President, alone, is worth the time.
Should politicians boycott the Inauguration? Short answer: Yes. Your absence is a statement and now is the time to show other leaders where you stand on a Trump Presidency. It matters. It means something. When Elected Officials stand against what they deem to be an illegitimate President — it shows their constituents that they hear the cry for a fair and moderate leader.
Should the public “not watch” the inauguration in the name of protest? I believe the answer here is no. This is history and we need to watch, learn and be vocal about what we do or do not want in this world. He’s a President not an Emperor. You can use your voice against this President, it’s the foundation of democracy. He’s not a supreme ruler with sweeping power — globally we must believe that our collective voices, calling for fairness in the Oval Office and it’s policies, are valid. Watch. Listen. React. Watch with your kids and explain what is happening, and how we got here. There is no reason to tune out in protest. Tuning out, IMHO that is how we got here — by turning a blind eye to the noisy Trump Supporters, believing that they will go away. Clearly that tack failed.
Last, but certainly not least: Should the media push back? HELL YES. It’s vital that the media no cower to the threat of being denied access. I highly recommend that you watch this Christiane Amonpour video (a marieclaire.com exclusive) where the veteran journo gives a no-holds-barred view of where we are as an industry. Trump’s exclusion of media outlets who don’t forward his agenda is shocking and wrong on most every level. It’s one thing for a sports organization to limit access to tear critics (something, by the way, I do not agree with) but — this is POTUS! Some say that these are dark days for media, a winter for journalism, I think it may just turn out to be the opposite.
Now is the time for journalism to stop relying on an established network of sources and crafted “stories” for content and actually DIG. Dig and find gold, take the time to validate information and then present it in a way that is undeniable.
These are the debates in #mybackyard. Would love your view. Pull up the yellow chair and comment!