Reuters’s editor-in-chief assures us that his organization is honest, fair, unbiased, impartial, and every other thumb-sucking cliche journalists whisper to themselves in the bathroom mirror each morning. Let’s see if he’s right.
In their “Pictures of the Month” collection, Reuters includes this image from Trump’s inauguration. Read the caption.
These are people “reacting” to Trump’s inauguration, Reuters tells us. Is that honest?
Reuters is telling us this girl came all the way to DC with her MAGA cap and her digital camera, but when the time came for Trump to actually be inaugurated she looked hurt and afraid. What a poor, naive little soul, but at least she’s come to her senses. Should we pity her, or is she really just a racist scumbag worthy of only our derision? (I mean, she clearly has the hat.) We’ll never know because it’s impossible for employees of Reuters to walk up to strangers and ask them questions.
At least the Reuters camera doesn’t lie: look at the deep contrast, the saturated dark tones, the vignetting! Reuters’s editor-in-chief would remind us that these are not post-production effects; it’s exactly what your eye would have seen had you been there. It was just as melancholy a time as it looked for those poor Trump supporters who, judging by their faces, either suddenly realized what a terrible error they made or else decided they truly didn’t care what was going on and retreated into unrelated private conversations, proving what decent we people knew all along: that these are fickle and stupid know-nothings with short attention spans whose votes ought to be discounted.
Yes, Reuters informs us this crowd is reacting during Trump’s inauguration. It couldn’t possibly be that it was bitter cold that day, that the ceremony wasn’t actually going on at the moment the photograph was taken, or that these people are actually not reacting to anything but rather are in the process of walking from one part of the Washington Mall to another. There’s no way the girl in the foreground is looking down in order to make sure she doesn’t trip over a curb or something…no, she’s obviously feeling consternation and embarrassment about her ideological choices. A journalist’s job is to portray the truth of that moment forthrightly, and there can be no doubt that’s what has been done here.
That Trump’s supporters are filled with anxiety and fear at the demon they have unleashed is an important thing for us to know about, and we should feel grateful for the service Reuters has bravely performed for us. We are now better appraised of the truth, and Trump was not just wrong but delusional to call journalists dishonest. Thank you Reuters.