On Thursday, February 2, Amy Goodman appeared on PBS Metrofocus with Betsy West of Columbia Journalism School and Ken Kurson, editor in chief of the Observer, Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner’s old publication. The discussion was moderated by host Jack Ford.
Goodman talked about the state of adversarial journalism in the Trump era.
AMY GOODMAN: For a long time, journalists have enjoyed what I call the access of evil, trading truth for access. Asking softball questions to get that access so that you got your question answered by the president. And right now a lot of journalists are questioning all of this. There’s no question that when Jim Acosta asked that question, and Donald Trump tried to ignore him, the next reporter and the next should have said, “I defer to Jim Acosta,” or “I ask that question” [sic]. Of course the next reporter he turned to was Breitbart, the white nationalist white supremacist news organization, and of course they were going to ask another question. But journalists together have to stand up when it comes to protecting our profession. It is absolutely critical, essential to the function of our democratic society. …
And now the media really has found its backbone. They’re being fiercely attacked by President Trump. I’ve been surprised, frankly. The media tends to cozy up to power, and I think if Donald Trump would just let them cozy up, I think they would, in the matter of about a week. But he continually is kind of punching them in the face, pushing back, banning people, stopping people from asking questions.
And so the media is finding its place in society. We’re supposed to cover power, not cover for power. We’re supposed to be the fourth estate, not for the state. And that’s what the media is doing right now.