Is it possible that the legacy media might soon have an enemy other than President Trump and millions of conservatives? If the growing discontent in the progressive movement against the Fourth Estate is any indication, the answer is yes.
As many know, most conservatives have detested the media for decades, carrying a profound resentment toward journalists who have functioned as not-so-cleverly disguised left-wing activists. Over the years, conservative distaste for the media intensified, resulting in the election of a rhetorical brawler with no qualms about punching back at the establishment.
…a piece chiding mainstream left-wing news outlets for including some conservatives in their programming.
But now, it appears that some progressives are taking up the anti-media mantle, albeit for different reasons. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) recently initiated a row with CBS News over the makeup of its team of reporters who will cover the 2020 campaign. But she’s not the only far-leftist who has expressed dissatisfaction with the media.
AOC Attacks CBS News
Ocasio-Cortez recently tweeted a stern criticism of CBS News after the news outlet announced the names of reporters who will cover the 2020 election. Her gripe? Racism and stuff. Apparently, CBS News’ team did not include a black reporter.
“This WH admin has made having a functional understanding of race in America one of the most important core competencies for a political journalist to have, yet @CBSNews hasn’t assigned a *single* black journalist to cover the 2020 election.
“Unacceptable in 2019. Try again.”
Josh Kraushaar, a politics editor at the National Journal, struck back with his own tweet: “Another thing AOC has in common with Trump: ‘media scold.’” Other journalists also slammed the lawmaker for her criticism of CBS News.
What followed was a back-and-forth between Ocasio-Cortez and Kraushaar that resembled a shouting match between high school girls over which teen heartthrob is the dreamiest. But what was interesting were the other responses to Ocasio-Cortez’s tweet. Some were critical of the representative for her blatant race baiting, while even more supported her brave stand against the apparent racism of CBS News. Here are some examples:
“‘I never give them hell. I tell the truth and they think it is hell’- Harry Truman and now AOC love it”
“I’m a journalist and a woman. (I’ve only seen a few male journalists respond so far, so just wanted to punctuate my femaleness.) The term ‘scold’ made me want to throw my phone across the room. Just unacceptable.”
“Your courage to denounce the plunder by the Right & the unjust society they’ve shaped has drawn predictable outrage from them & also made you a target for those who seek to slay the dragon they believe you represent by lies & misrepresentation. They will all fail, & fail badly”
“Well done. He and others often can’t even grasp the real point in discussions re race, gender, or intersectionality until you flip the situation like this. (‘Sad!’)”
Ocasio-Cortez may be the most well-known progressive figure sniping at the media, but she is far from alone.
Is a Movement Brewing?
This is not Ocasio-Cortez’s first skirmish with the press. She recently slammed fact checkers for daring to debunk some of her erroneous claims. Interestingly enough, some left-leaning news outlets agreed with her. Both Vox and New York Magazine published pieces siding with the factually challenged lawmaker.
But if there is growing frustration with the media among progressives, it started even before Ocasio-Cortez entered the national spotlight. In 2017, Vox put out a video that lambasted the legacy media for not having a sufficient level of anti-Trump bias. No joke. No satire. Vox really believes the press should be more biased against the right.
The Observer, another left-leaning publication, published a piece chiding mainstream left-wing news outlets for including some conservatives in their programming. “While The New York Times and MSNBC have shifted toward the center to embrace the demographic of Republicans that voted for Mitt Romney but are anti-Trump, they leave progressives without representation on their platform, despite the overwhelming, nationwide popularity of Sen. Bernie Sanders,” it wrote.
It is unclear if Ocasio-Cortez’s recent spats with the media are the start of a trend, but the fact that others of the progressive persuasion also have issued similar criticisms is telling. The press is already constantly being denounced by President Trump and conservatives. Can the media withstand attacks from the left as well?