This Is Going To Be A Fight

This Is Going To Be A Fight

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Bloomberg photo

Trump's first cataclysmic "press conference" revealed the tawdry depths to which we've already sunk, including the spectacle of CNN getting snarlingly shut down and NO other journalist in the room having the chutzpah to challenge it - aka "Trump Just Shot Jim Acosta in the Middle of Fifth Avenue and the Press Didn't Blink." Edward R Murrow must be spinning in his grave. The tin-pot tyranny felt so familiar to a Russian journalist he promptly wrote a message to his "doomed colleagues" in the US on covering "an authoritarian leader with a massive ego and a deep disdain for your trade and everything you hold dear." "Facts don't matter... don't expect camaraderie...and this man owns you," he reminded them. "Welcome to the era of bullshit." 

It's these same harsh and unacceptable realities that Deadspin's Hamilton Nolan highlights in his powerful, "This Is Why You Don't Kiss the Ring." Noting that ethical, political and social norms exist for a reason, he argues we must speak up every time they're violated if normalization is not to set in. "We should not fool ourselves about what is happening in front of our eyes," he writes. "We do not need to wonder how this will end. It will end poorly....This is not going to be a free and fair exchange of ideas. This is going to be a fight."

A good time to start: The increasingly pathetic inauguration looming before us. Officials say that six times more buses have applied for parking for the Women's March on Jan. 21 than for the inauguration itself - over 1,200 permit applications, including for over 10 buses from Maine, vs. about 200 nationwide. Also planned: A celebrity-filled un-inauguration telethon to  raise money for the ACLU, Planned Parenthood and EarthJustice.

And several members of Congress are slated, entirely appropriately, to boycott inaugural activities altogether. Congresswoman Barbara Lee says it best: The event should be a celebration, and it isn't. "I will not be celebrating," she said in a statement. "I will be organizing and preparing for resistance."

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A free and independent press is essential to the health of a functioning democracy

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