NPR Puts ‘Trigger Warning’ at Start of Steve Bannon Story

Stephen K. Bannon
Kirk Irwin/Getty Images for SiriusXM

National Public Radio added a “trigger warning” to the start of a story on All Things Considered on Monday evening about President-elect Donald Trump’s decision to appoint Breitbart News Executive Chairman Stephen K. Bannon as Chief Strategist and Senior Counselor.

Host Robert Siegel introduced the story by David Folkenflik with the following warning (emphasis added):

Donald Trump has richly rewarded his campaign’s CEO, Steve Bannon, with an appointment as chief White House strategist. That appointment has inspired a firestorm. Bannon’s critics say his right-wing news site, Breitbart, spreads hate and bigotry, as NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik reports. And just a note – this story has language that some listeners might find offensive.

The story includes brief quotes from Breitbart News’ Senior Editor-at-Large and In-House Counsel, Joel Pollak:

JOEL POLLAK: Breitbart News is a conservative website, and we’re not racist. We’re not anti-Semitic. We’re not anti-gay. We’re not anti-woman. We’re not any of those things.

FOLKENFLIK: Pollak says Bannon is inclusive in his hiring.

POLLAK: Well, I am an Orthodox Jew, and I have Saturdays off, Jewish holidays off. And Steventon always wishes me a Shabbat shalom on Friday afternoon, for the record, just in case you were concerned about that.

Pollak refuted accusations against Bannon and Breitbart News at multiple outlets, including Breitbart News, in an article titled, “Stephen K. Bannon: Friend of the Jewish People, Defender of Israel.” On CNN, he faced a three-on-one panel discussion and pointed out that the accusations against Bannon and Breitbart News  were not based on any evidence.

“[I] think that when you do this, this is what the media do, this is what the establishment does — they throw out a bunch of innuendo to try to smear someone,” he said.


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