Jeff Flake Speech Highlights

By Ashley Paskill on January 17, 2018

Arizona Senator Jeff Flake gave a speech to the Senate on Wednesday, January 17, 2018. In the speech, he gave a message to President Trump that attacking the media the way he has is detrimental to the democracy the United States is built on. The speech had so many relevant points that are important to note.

“So, from our very beginnings, our freedom has been predicated on truth.”

In the line directly before this sentence, Flake quoted the Declaration of Independence. Our nation was founded on freedom that is built on truth. Trump, however, has appeared to deny various truths directed at him. This, as Flake pointed out, hurts our democracy. “For without truth, and a principled fidelity to truth and to shared facts, Mr. President, our democracy will not last,” Flake continued.

“It was the year in which an unrelenting daily assault on the constitutionally-protected free press was launched by that same White House, an assault that is as unprecedented as it is unwarranted.”

President Trump continually referred to the press as the “enemy of the people.” No President has ever attacked the media in such a way. The media serves as a watchdog in regards to government and seeks to provide a service of truth and information for citizens. Sure, there have been Presidents that have not been happy with the way the media is covering them, but they have not attacked the press as harshly as Trump has.

“No politician will ever get to tell us what the truth is and is not.”

Trump repeatedly refers to any press he deems unworthy as “fake news,” particularly when talking about MSNBC and CNN. He has mentioned that certain true facts that have been reported by various news outlets are not true, despite the fact that the journalists used sources and fact-checkers to ensure that the truth is there. No politician, not even the President, can tell us what facts are true or not true.

“Of course, a major difference between politicians and the free press is that the press usually corrects itself when it gets something wrong.”

It is no secret that politicians tend to lie. President Trump has done so in seemingly record numbers, but he is not the only one who has lied. Like many politicians, Trump has refused to admit the fact that he has lied. However, when the press makes a mistake, they make every effort to fix it as soon as possible and journalists who make mistakes face punishment. In the era of the internet, journalists can correct web posts simply.

By Ashley Paskill

Uloop Writer

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