What, exactly, is a journalist? The cynical among us (read: every comment to the posts on journalism that I write) would say that a journalist is a leftwing hack that advocates for the left-of-center causes and attacks Republicans at every opportunity. And, why not say that? Modern journalism is exactly that, you know.
But, let us take the curious case of Jorge Ramos, a man who stood up, out of turn, at a Trump press conference and attempted to lecture Trump on immigration issues before being removed. Ramos went all over the place saying that, as a journalist, he had rights that were violated by Trump. Is this true? Did Ramos get mistreated by the big bad Trump?
Of course not.
What is a journalist? He or she is a human being whose job is to report the news. It is commonly accepted that journalists are to strictly report the news and not be the news, which is the very first rule Ramos broke. And he knew he was going to be the news. It’s what he wanted. His goal was to get kicked out, and by God, Trump said “Go back to Univision,” and tossed Ramos out like he was a raging alcoholic at a bar around closing time. Good for Trump for doing so, and even better for Trump to be the bigger man and let Ramos back in.
A journalist asks the tough questions. They pursue the truth. They seek information beneficial to the public. Ramos had one goal: Get on camera to attack Trump. His “question,” if indeed you could call some sort of hybrid rant/lecture/screed such, was nothing more than the publicity stunt of a man who pretends to be a journalist while pursuing a spotlight to demand that people who violate the law to be in this country be treated as citizens (sorry, Lefties! They aren’t citizens!). There is no reason to think that anything he did was journalistic in any regard.
Had it been any one else, I’d be livid that a man who wants to be president of the United States would kick out a journalist. Especially Trump, who has at times seemed to be able to dish it, but not take it. After all, he has every right to remove a journalist because it is his event, but to seek to dodge questions by barring journalists from participating shows weakness. However, the man he had removed was a man who contributes nothing to journalism. He is an attention whore of the highest caliber and seeks only his own glory in front of the camera.
Ramos is absolutely no journalist, and to act as though he is some sort of martyr because Trump was mean and kicked him out (never mind that he let him back in later and lost yet another exchange) is an insult to the people who are journalists, who know how to do their jobs.