Lately, I’ve had this feeling that we’re just losing, that we’re getting our asses kicked. And I’m not talking about Democrats — I’m talking about facts. The facts and common sense are being overwhelmed.
I think we’re going about this all wrong.
The White House and the right is controlling the narrative, and this latest CNN kerfuffle is the perfect example. A few days ago, Donald Trump tweets a childish, juvenile GIF that could easily be seen as inciting violence against the media, and somehow, the media is losing this argument. How?
CNN decides to do some light investigation to find out who created a childish meme that was tweeted out by the POTUS, they find out that he has a history of racist, anti-semitic, Islamophobic posts, they decide not to post his identity, and now guys like Mike Cernovich and Donald Trump Jr. — people largely ignored as online trolls just six months ago — twist the argument around on CNN. Suddenly, CNN — who didn’t even publish the name of an anti-semite who had himself published a list of Jewish journalists — is defending itself. For what? And the mainstream media is covering the reaction from the far-right, which is getting a ton more play than the fact that Donald Trump tweeted a juvenile, unpresidential GIF originally created by a middle-aged bigot. Meanwhile, the far-right has done exactly what CNN didn’t do: It’s doxxed CNN’s journalists. They’re sending death threats. They’re promising to go after their children.
It’s like the election all over again. Instead of focusing on the bad act, we’re focused on the response and justification to the bad act, as well as the collateral damage that has ensued. CNN and the rest of the media is getting its ass handed to them, and they are out there reporting on all of Trump’s attacks against the media. CNN (and others) are basically handing Trump the bullets with which he uses to shoot them.
It’s a vicious cycle, and someone needs to figure out how to break it. We need a goddamn rallying point. Someone needs to rise up out of this and lead us. We need our own talking points. Instead of reacting to every goddamn thing with a shotgun blast, we need a “CNN is fake news” talking point that we can beat to death. CNN is Donald Trump’s Hillary now; he’s got an enemy. He’s constantly on the attack, and the goddamn media is constantly on the defensive.
We need to pick someone to represent us. Not Bernie. Not Hillary. Not Schumer. Not Pelosi. Someone above the fray. Someone like Jon Stewart. Or Sam Bee, whose voice we should work to amplify. Give Trump a better, more formidable enemy than CNN. Someone respected who can go on the offensive. Someone who attracts a crowd. Someone else in the opposition that the media can train its focus on, so that it can stay out of the fucking story.
It’s too goddamn early, but we need someone to step up and announce a candidate for President in 2020, someone who can start campaigning ASAP so that polls can come out between Trump and this candidate, and if those polls show the Democrat leading, Trump will attack that person because Trump cannot stand the fact that someone is beating him. The media will go to that person for reaction, and the battle will go back to where it should be: Between the politicians, instead of between the White House and the mainstream media.
Get your shit together, DNC. Stop rehashing the 2016 election. Stop this Bernie or Hillary business. Find someone new — Kamala Harris or Jason Kander, Cory Booker, Angus King, or Elizabeth Warren — I don’t care who it is, because it doesn’t even have to be someone in it for the long haul. Just someone who can represents our interests and attack the President for now, because as long as the media remains Trump’s focus, its credibility will continue to erode, and in 2020, the institutions that will allow us to fight back with facts will no longer exist. The narrative right now should not be Trump vs. The Media. It should be Trump vs. The Democrats, but the Democrats are MIA.