The number of attacks and arrests by police on journalists has been shocking, at least until you remember that Donald Trump has been fueling the fires and signaling approval for the past 3 1/2 years.
June 1, 2020

Donald Trump is a fascist who has spent the last 3 1/2 years demeaning and discounting journalists and journalism. From the cry of "Fake News" to his idiotic adoption of Sarah Palin's "lamestream media" to his condemnation of media as "the enemy of the people," he has made a point of delegitimizing actual reporting in favor of his propaganda outlets, Fox News and more recently, OANN.

On Sunday, after two days of unwarranted arrests of journalists and physical attacks on them by police, Trump tweeted this:

That reference to "truly bad people with a sick agenda" is nothing more than a dog whistle (more like a bullhorn) for the law-and-order types who subscribe to his autocratic outlook to take on the threat he describes and "work through them to GREATNESS."

And it paid off. Look at what DID happen to journalists at these protests at the hands of police: Arrests and violent attacks. The video above is Ali Velshi, who was reporting on a PEACEFUL protest when all hell broke loose. The cops threw tear gas canisters and shot rubber bullets into a protest where no one was violent.

Several people have been collecting evidence of these various attacks on journalists on Twitter. The threads are too long to post all of them here, but here are some examples:

There are many, many more in each of those threads. CNN reporter Omar Jiminez was hit with tear gas and shot at with rubber bullets too, the very day that Minnesota Governor Tim Walz apologized and took responsibility for his arrest the day before.

I do want to chide media for choosing the "if it bleeds it leads" approach to the protests. Where 90 percent of protests were positive, media would focus on the 10 percent where there was violence, leaving the impression that all protests were violent. They weren't.

Still, this is what a police state looks like. Attacking journalists' physically and arresting them so they cannot report to the rest of us is the first step toward tyranny. There must be serious and immediate consequences that permanently bar police from attacking clearly identified journalists.

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