On the same morning some 300 newspapers came together to defend the free press, US President Donald Trump tweeted that the “fake news media” are the “opposition party”.
The editorial campaign was spearheaded by the Boston Globe, with papers addressing attacks on the media from Trump – including that they are the “enemies of the American people” – in leader and opinion columns.
Trump took to Twitter to respond to the editorials on Thursday morning, tweeting that the Globe is “in collusion with other papers on free press” and that many of the media are “pushing a political agenda.”
In the wake of the tweets, The Globe received a bomb threat, which is now being investigated by the FBI – although officials at the paper said they didn’t believe it was a serious threat.
A Globe spokesperson said: “There is an increased police presence at The Boston Globe’s headquarters after a bomb threat was made against the newspaper Thursday in wake of a tweet that was sent out by President Trump.”
Not all newspapers were on board with the co-operative effort to speak out against what the Globe described as Trump’s “dirty war against the free press”.
The Los Angeles Times’ editorial board refused to participate. In a statement on their website, editor Nicholas Goldberg said: “There will be no free press editorial on our page today….we decided not to write about the subject on this particular Thursday because we cherish our independence.
“This is not because we don’t believe that President Trump has been engaged in cynical, demagogic and unfair assault on our industry.”
“Trump’s strategy is pretty clear: By Branding reporters as liars, he apparently hopes to discredit, disrupt or bully into silence anyone who challenges his version of reality.”
The Wall Street Journal published an opinion piece by a writer suggesting Trump has the same right to freedom of speech that newspapers have.