NEWS AND OPINION:
Inaccuracies, melodrama, bias, outrage: Journalists showcased plenty during election night news coverage which proved to be intense — and endless. The phenomenon has taken a toll. The weary nation appears to be peeved at the press, and that includes Democrats and Republicans alike who are literally turning away.
“As America deals with the fallout of the election, 27 percent of the country is actively trying to avoid the news. Democrats (36 percent) are the most likely to be making an effort to avert their gaze from newspapers and television news, but the divide is not as significant as one might expect. 21 percent of Republicans are also trying to avoid the news,” writes Peter Moore, an analyst for YouGov, which polled a thousand Americans on the subject.
“Very few — 11 percent — say that reading or watching the news has put them in a good mood in recent days,” he adds, noting that 3 percent of the Democrats and 26 percent of Republicans agree.
Which leaves America in a cranky state, at least for the time being. Almost half of the nation — 46 percent — are now in a “bad mood,” the poll found. That includes two thirds of Democrats and just over a third of Republicans.
SIGN OF THE TIMES
“My mother shared the story of a friend of hers, an elderly lady who lost her husband this year, who had been previously invited by extended family to share Thanksgiving with them in the Northeast. She lives in North Carolina. This lady is a big Donald Trump supporter, and everyone in the family knows it. They’re Democrats, so they tolerated their red state cousin through the election, believing all dissenters would be put in their place once Hillary Clinton won,” says D.C. McAllister, a columnist for PJ Media.
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“That didn’t happen. So the day after the election, my mom’s friend got a phone call from her oh-so-tolerant and enlightened family in the Northeast, disinviting an elderly widow from Thanksgiving dinner. So fragile are these snowflakes, so intolerant are they of different political views, that they can’t even bear the presence of a Trump-supporting, newly widowed senior,” Ms. McAllister continues.
“Another story comes from my own experience. A family email was sent to all of us from the organizer of this year’s Thanksgiving dinner, informing us of the time and place — and adding a nice little note at the bottom that ‘politics’ will not be discussed this year. In other words, if you can’t keep your mouth shut about Trump, stay at home along with your potato salad and stuffing.”
CONTINUING A TRUMP TRADITION
During his campaign, President-elect Donald Trump solicited voter opinion about issues, debate questions and Democratic opposition through a series of eight public opinion polls — by passing both the media and traditional pollsters alike. Mr. Trump’s transitional team appears to be continuing the tradition via the spiffy new website launched within hours of the nominee’s victory. It is an official federal site, found at Greatagain.gov.
Along with two headings devoted to press information and employment, there’s also “Share your ideas.” It is straightforward and no frills.
“Tell us your story,” the site advises, asking for name and email. “How do you want to make America great?”
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HANG ONTO THOSE DEER RIFLES
Hunters and gun owners “were able to breathe a sigh of relief when they found out Donald Trump won the presidency,” reports Outdoor Hub, a popular online news source for hunters, anglers and fans of shooting sports.
“A couple of real big concerns in this election were the handling of the Supreme Court and defending our Second Amendment Rights. With Trump behind the wheel, we can rest assured that our right to bear arms is safe and sound. The only thing we do have to watch out for is transferring federal lands to the states. Sure, it sounds reasonable, but in reality, it’s just a backdoor attempt at allowing more resource extraction from our public lands,” the site noted in an editorial
“It appears, at least for now, that this was a big win for hunters. If you compare Donald Trump’s America vs Hillary Clinton‘s America, it can be a little scary for both sides, but at least with Trump, we don’t have to worry about someone showing up at our doors looking to take away our deer rifles.”
The site is also hopeful about legislation introduced last year by Rep. Matt Salmon, Arizona Republican, which would remove gun silencers from the jurisdiction of the National Firearms Act, and eliminate the “current complicated and expensive process’ associated with acquiring such a device.
“While this bill faced an uphill battle before the election that’s a very different story now. With Trump in the White House, a Republican Senate, and a Republican House this bill could be fast tracked to the President’s desk,” the site noted.
SAY HELLO TO PROFESSOR MCDONNELL
The classroom is calling Bob McDonnell. The former Virginia governor and Regent University arrives on the campus in January as a “distinguished professor,” poised to teach in the Robertson School of Government. Mr. McDonnell also plans to establish the Governor’s Center for Federalism and Civility, described as “an initiative that will assist the states in understanding their role in a federal society.”
The university is pleased, “delighted,” in the words of the university’s chancellor and founder M.G. “Pat” Robinson.
“Teaching is something that I’ve often considered throughout my years of public service. During my painful journey through the justice system after I left the governor’s office, I came to the realization that politics and polls are much less important than people and policies,” Mr. McDonnell explains. “I’m eager to engage with Regent students and faculty in and out of the classroom, and I hope that my experiences can inspire others to consider careers in public service.”
POLL DU JOUR
• 97 percent of registered U.S. voters say they did not let bias in the media influence their vote.
• 78 percent say media coverage of the 2016 presidential campaign was biased.
• 69 percent do not believe the news media are “honest and truthful.”
• 59 percent say the media was biased in favor of Mrs. Clinton.
• 21 percent say the media was biased in favor of Donald Trump.
Source: A Media Research Center/You Gov poll of 2,006 U.S. adults who voted in the 2016 election, conducted Nov. 9-10.
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