Monday on his nationally syndicated radio show, conservative talker Rush Limbaugh said the reaction of the media to President Donald Trump‘s tweet labeling them an “enemy of the American people” was because some journalists believe the First Amendment gives them “immunity from criticism.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 17, 2017
Partial transcript as follows:
I want to thank F. Chuck Todd of NBC for opening my eyes to this. For the longest time I’ve been genuinely curious why it is that media people think that they cannot be criticized.
And they really do. They really think they can go out and research people and they can dig up dirt from anybody they want, their pasts, and they can broadcast it all over. And if somebody’s life, somebody’s marriage, somebody’s relationship, somebody’s kid gets destroyed or ruined, fine and dandy.
They can do all of that they want, but you turn it around and you start investigating your favorite journalist to find out how many illegitimate kids he or she might have had in college or how many DUIs they had, you know, or how many communist sympathizer meetings they went to, then all hell breaks loose and they start squealing like stuck pigs, “You can’t do that! We’re journalists!”
I said, “Where does this come from?” It’s more than just hubris. I finally found out. You know what it is, Mr. Snerdley? These clowns actually believe that since they are recognized in the First Amendment that they have constitutional immunity.
Criticizing them is attacking the First Amendment. They really believe this. Criticizing them is akin to attacking the Constitution, and that’s un-American, and that’s why you hear these journalists say. “It’s un-American to criticize. It’s un-American for Trump to be destabilizing. It’s un-American for Trump to be going out there and trying to do damage to the media. We’ve got First Amendment protection.”
Well, so does the president, and the president happens to be mentioned in the Constitution before the media. The president’s mentioned in Article 2. The media doesn’t make it ’til the First Amendment. But yet the media thinks there’s nothing bad about running around and trying to attack political figures and destroying them.
This is what it is, folks. They are so far gone, they really think that they are the last line of defense between freedom and democracy and tyranny. And attacking them and challenging their reputation is no more and no less than attacking the Constitution and trying to destroy America and democracy. That’s what they think. That explains why you can’t go after them.
Anyhow, let’s take another brief break here.
Look, the only thing the First Amendment does for the press is the same thing it gives everybody else. They can say what they want to say. That’s essentially what the First Amendment says for the press like it says it for you and me. It singles them out and references them in terms of their importance, a free and unintimidated, whatever, unattached media. And nobody objects to that, but it does not grant them immunity from criticism. It does not grant them freedom to be disagreed with. It does not grant them freedom from opposition.
They seem to think that it does. And I think it all falls under the notion of how really poorly constitutional education, American history education’s been for decades in this country. Not to mention the kind of poison that’s injected into the young skulls full of mush populating journalism schools all over the United States. But really, folks, it’s the one thing that, as far as the media’s concerned, justifies what they’re doing.
Now, as I say, you won’t even get them to admit what they’re doing. You won’t even get them to admit they’re trying to destroy Trump. They come up with some, “No, no, no, no. It is the job of the media to hold powerful people accountable.” Yeah. Right. Why doesn’t that apply to powerful Democrats? And don’t tell me that it does, because everybody knows you give ’em a pass. Each and every time something comes up with ’em, you cover for ’em. It’s a joke.
Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN