(Conservative Tribune) – Breaking what is generally regarded as a cardinal rule of journalism — if perhaps unwritten — CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta has made himself the center of the story on multiple occasions this week instead of simply reporting the story in an objective manner.
Townhall noted that Acosta became the central story on Tuesday after he attempted to cover President Donald Trump’s rally in Tampa, Florida, but was confronted by a crowd of Trump supporters who loudly chanted “CNN sucks” and “fake news” — among other things — while he delivered a live report ahead of the rally.
Acosta became the center of attention again on Thursday when he clashed with White House press secretary Sarah Sanders during the daily briefing over his indignant insistence that she retract statements from the president that labelled some individuals and outlets in the “fake news” media as being “enemies of the people,” which Sanders declined to do.
He later claimed in a tweet to have left the briefing early because he was “saddened” by Sanders not saying what he wanted her to say, but it appears that at least one veteran member of the mainstream media has had enough of Acosta’s “antics,” and let him know via social media.
Hey Jim @acosta, the job of a true journalist is not to be sad or happy by what happens in a press briefing room. It is to ask questions and report facts about what was said/not said. Your feelings, antics, + self promotion are hurting journalism, not helping it. Enough. https://t.co/J1sO8enSBz
— David Shuster (@DavidShuster) August 3, 2018
Long-time journalist David Schuster tweeted, “Hey Jim @acosta, the job of a true journalist is not to be sad or happy by what happens in a press briefing room. It is to ask questions and report facts about what was said/not said. Your feelings, antics, + self promotion are hurting journalism, not helping it. Enough.”
Schuster, an Emmy Award-winning veteran investigative journalist and anchor who has worked with CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, Current TV and even Al Jazeera-America, is currently the managing editor of i24 News in America, and certainly knows what he is talking about.
While there were many who agreed with Schuster’s take on Acosta’s behavior in the comments, there were also plenty who defended the CNN reporter as some righteous American warrior fighting for the truth against the current administration, whose early exit from the briefing was a display of true patriotism. A few of those comments drew a reply from Schuster himself, who insinuated in one response that he is no fan of the administration either, but nevertheless holds journalists to a higher standard than has been seen recently.
Schuster tweeted, “So you think the others who stayed in the briefing room were being un-american? Many journalists are sick of being lied to and insulted. But they have the guts and integrity to stay there, report the facts, + not become part of the story. @acosta gave #trump a victory today.”
So you think the others who stayed in the briefing room were being un-american? Many journalists are sick of being lied to and insulted. But they have the guts and integrity to stay there, report the facts, + not become part of the story. @acosta gave #trump a victory today. https://t.co/OB5XY6yFgJ
— David Shuster (@DavidShuster) August 3, 2018
It would be nice if Acosta — along with his defenders in the media — received this chastisement from an actual journalist with an open mind and took this constructive criticism to heart.
Alas, that appears unlikely at this moment, as Acosta seems to relish the publicity he receives when he becomes the central part of a story instead of merely reporting on a story.
Indeed, Acosta and the handful of other incredibly biased reporters like him in the White House press pool are possibly already planning their next line of insistent questioning about relatively marginal issues for Sanders and other representatives of the administration instead of preparing to ask substantive questions about the economy or policies that have an impact on American citizens.
As such, there is now a renewal of a previous call by former press secretaries — Mike McCurry of the Clinton administration and Ari Fleischer of the Bush administration — to remove the cameras from the daily briefing room in order to lessen the likelihood of confrontational showboating by publicity hounds like Acosta.
Again: Cameras need to be taken out of the WH press briefings per the original proposal by McCurry (Clinton press sec’y) & Fleischer (Bush press sec’y). The only news emerging from these briefings involves confrontation and almost nothing involving substance. This is all a show. https://t.co/PezrdGzvf9
— Joe Concha (@JoeConchaTV) August 2, 2018
It remains to be seen if that will ever happen, and until it does or the attention-seekers like Acosta have their White House credentials revoked, scenes like what played out on Thursday are bound to happen again.