I was a reporter once, tough gig. (takes swig)

I worked as a reporter years ago.

 I was taught the need for a clear separation between “news” and “entertainment”. There would never be an opportunity in a news story for opinions. It might be entertaining, but it’s not “fact” and therefore not “news”. Freedom of the press, to me, is the freedom to report issues and facts. Not to opine in your reportage.

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Comedian Jon Stewart was taken to task by Fox News, and invited on their talk show to defend his criticisms. Stewart, for years has poked fun at their news reporting and Fox thought it fair to critique Mr. Stewart about his own coverage. Stewart pointed out, “Fox News” should be informative, accurate, fair and balanced as a journalistic mandate. Stewart’s show, on the other hand, is on Comedy Central right after Muppets making prank phone calls. There should be no question, he says, who is supposed to be the serious one here. 

But Entertainers are now presenters, and even Presidents. The separation is gone between fact, fiction and opinion. Each time the US President lies or is inaccurate, the media broadcasts it. Worse yet, they follow up with opinion and banter between hosts, repeating the same BS to “analyze” the issue. People can’t tell the difference anymore between what is a verifiable fact, and what is “spoken by a famous person so must be true” kind of alterntative-facts. It’s all reported as the same. Thus, “Fake News” was born.

If you stick to the facts, (the actual verifiable bits), Narcissists will starve. Report only things he does or accomplishes…. not things he says. Calling Omarosa a “dog” or spouting off about Trudeau’s socks has no impact on life, and should never make it to headline. It might be good fodder for a Jon Stewart sketch, but it’s not helping me gather facts at the end of the day.

Stick to the facts Mr. Journalist. Don’t give me Trumps Tweets and claim it important. Don’t insert Twitter chatter to the story and claim it as dialogue. Just lay it out like a grocery list of facts. Tell us the value of the dollar; the cost of tomatoes - not which campaign spent more, or how much you don’t like tomatoes. 

You are entitled to your opinion, but we, the public, should be entitled to facts.

A note for readers: Mirror editor recently gave readers Trump tweets in a story - however it was on the page marked Opinion at the top, and was an example on how to ferret out dishonesty in less than 144 characters.

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