First, USA Today last Thursday:
A California man was arrested and charged Thursday with making violent threats to Boston Globe employees, calling the newspaper the “enemy of the people,” the U.S. Attorney’s office for Massachusetts said.
Robert D. Chain, 68, of Encino, California, was charged with one count of making threatening communications in interstate commerce, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison. He is scheduled to appear in federal court in Los Angeles Thursday and be transferred to Boston at a future time.
Court documents say Chain made about 14 threatening calls between Aug. 10-22, in reaction to the Globe’s efforts to organize a coordinated response from newspapers across the country to President Trump’s repeated attacks on the media.
In those calls, Chain allegedly referred to the Globe as “the enemy of the people’’ and threatened to kill its employees. Trump has often used that phrase in lambasting the news media.
According to the criminal complaint, the caller said, “As long as you keep attacking the President, the duly elected President of the United States, in the continuation of your treasonous and seditious acts, I will continue to threats, harass, and annoy the Boston Globe, owned by the New York Times, the other fake news.”
The Globe said more than 400 news outlets joined the coordinated campaign, including the New York Times, Dallas Morning News, Chicago Sun-Times, Philadelphia Inquirer and Denver Post, writing editorials in support of freedom of the press and decrying Trump’s references to the press as “fake news.’’
For the Wisconsin version of those opinion pieces, click here, then read this blog.
The day the mass editorials published on Aug. 16, authorities say Chain called the Globe’s newsroom and threatened to shoot its employees in the head “later today, at 4 o’clock.’’ Boston police responded by stationing personnel outside the Globe’s offices.
“Everyone has a right to express their opinion, but threatening to kill people takes it over the line and will not be tolerated,” Harold H. Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Boston Division, said in a statement. “Today’s arrest of Robert Chain should serve a warning to others, that making threats is not a prank, it’s a federal crime.’’ …
Trump’s condemnations of the press have become a common part of his speeches and rallies, and at some of them his supporters have directed invectives and obscene gestures at the media section.
In announcing Thursday’s arrest, U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling said, “In a time of increasing political polarization, and amid the increasing incidence of mass shootings, members of the public must police their own political rhetoric. Or we will.”
Next, Patrick Poole:
A man rammed his truck into the studios of Dallas Fox affiliate KDFW earlier this morning, just two days after Meet the Press host Chuck Todd published an article calling on his media colleagues to “start fighting back” against Fox News.
KDFW reports on the incident targeting their offices:
A man was arrested Wednesday morning after crashing a truck into the side of the FOX4 building in downtown Dallas.
The man, after repeatedly crashing his vehicle into a side of the building with floor to ceiling windows, got out of his vehicle and began ranting.
FOX4 photojournalists were able to film him placing numerous boxes next to a sidedoor filled with stacks of paper. The papers were also strewn across the sidewalk and street adjacent to the building.The man ranted about “high treason” and also mentioned a sheriff’s department.
The Dallas police bomb squad was dispatched to investigate a bag the man had left at the scene.
KDFW reports that all personnel were inside the building at the time, and no one from the station was injured.
This car ramming attack comes just after NBC host Chuck Todd published an articleon Monday at The Atlantic calling for others to “start fighting back” against Fox News.
According to Todd, Fox News is the face of a 50-year vilification campaign targeting corporate media.
Of course, his corporate media colleagues all dutifully jumped on the anti-Fox News bandwagon in support of Todd’s call.
Now that someone may have responded to their collective call to “start fighting back” against Fox News, it remains to be seen if the establishment corporate media will tone down their open incitement targeting Fox News and supporters of President Trump.
Yeah, well, don’t hold your breath on that one. Todd appears to have forgotten that Fox is a corporation too, which means by his definition one part of the corporate media has been waging a 50-year war against the rest of the corporate media.
Some people on social media tried to claim that Trump’s rhetoric caused the attack on the TV station. I am untrained in psychiatry, so who knows the motivations of the guy who tried to turn a TV station into a drive-in. (Which happened an employer of mine 90 minutes into my first day there, without the ranting. For that matter, as readers know I’ve fielded various threats since college.)
At this point, though, it’s a race to see what’s going to happen next — assassinations or bigger mass murders than what happened at the Annapolis (Md.) Capital.