Everyone knows that sections of our society are highly self congratulatory. They have awards shows to tell everyone how wonderful they are. They make little statutes to give each other to make sure that other people see the little statutes and walk away with envy. They have museums to trumpet their great work, wax museums, and all kinds of cultural monuments to their wonderfulness.
One of the sections that thinks very highly of itself is the so called journalism and media news arena. They actually have awards and special nights where they parade their stars and accomplishments. They believe that they are the paragons of the Constitutions protection of free speech and freedom of the press. They even have, believe it or not, a museum of journalism. There is a “Believe It or Not Museum” Don’t confuse the two. This is called the “Newseum” which is precious but misses that point that what we see and hear today really isn’t news, News is the reporting of what happened. But leading news people like Christ Wallace say, “I am interested in what happens next”. What happens next is by definition in the future, which makes it unknowable except by those who practice divination. Anyway a wonderful sign of the times is that the Newseum is closing. According to the Washington Examiner, “The Freedom Forum, creator and primary funder of the Newseum, remains committed to continuing its mission to champion the five freedoms of the First Amendment and to increase public awareness about the importance of a free and fair press,”
So freedom of the press and free speech. Interesting concepts in todays world. You have free speech unless you are a Christian on a University campus, a protestor at an abortion clinic or a blog write on the internet or twitter that has a conservative bent. Some political candidate stated that the Presidents twitter feed should be blocked and not one of the glittering gems of fairness in the press object. Joe Biden wrote a letter to major news out lets that they should not allow Rudy Giuliani to be interviewed or on the air and I wait with baited breath for the free press and free speech folks to complain or at least wag their ink stained fingers in censure. I won’t hold my breath however.
Even Prince Harry has finally had enough and complained about the fake news and negative reporting.
So it was one of those wonderful coincidences that the fake news, as some call it, who are anxious to close down the free speech of some or to ignore certain voices as not worthy of hearing, have to close down their temple of self congratulation. People love it, they say, but they can’t afford the building, the upkeep, or whatever other costs there might be. How is it possible when they run wonderful exhibits like “Seriously Funny: From the Desk of ‘The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.’”
Seriously funny is an oxymoron. So is the notion of a free press.