Accuracy in Media


Mainstream media reacted with glee Sunday night when President Donald Trump was booed at the World Series game in Washington.

President Trump, his wife, Melania, and various allies in Congress took in Game 5 of the World Series from a luxury box at Nationals Park. When Trump was shown on the screen, some boos could be heard in the crowd of more than 40,000, and a chant became audible for a few seconds of fans saying, “Lock him up.”

The chants did not seem to involve even half the crowd, but the media pounced. “Trump met with sustained boos when introduced at Game 5 of the World Series,” wrote the Washington Post over a story by Maura Judkis, who covers “culture, food and the arts” for the Post, and Josh Dawsey, a White House reporter.

Judkis and Dawsey reported without evidence that the booing was “hitting almost 100 decibels.”

The Nationals “had sought to keep politics out of their first trip to the World Series and did not invite Trump, who decided to come and then arranged logistics with Major League Baseball, officials said,” they wrote. “After his brief introduction, Trump was largely a non-presence in the ballpark.”

The Post also pointed out “presidents often throw out the ceremonial first pitch when they attend a baseball game, but that honor Sunday instead went to chef and humanitarian Jose Andres, who has faced off with Trump in court over scuttled plans to build a restaurant in the Trump International Hotel and has criticized many of Trump’s policies.”

At Vanity Fair, the headline read: “Winning: Trump Boos Reached ‘Almost 100 Decibels” at Nationals World Series Game.” Bess Levin’s lead read: “Donald Trump has rarely returned to New York City since becoming president, likely because, despite the fact that he calls the city home, most people who live there can’t stand him. Yet there may be a place that hates him even more, and that’s Washington, DC., where he received a humiliating 4 percent of the vote in 2016.”

Levin repeated the 100 decibels claim, citing the Post, which means there was still no evidence for it.

Slate wrote: “America Came Together to Boo Donald Trump at the World Series” by Matthew Dessem.

“President Donald Trump attended Game 5 of the World Series in Washington on Sunday night, giving a crowd of patriotic Americans enjoying our national pastime an unexpected opportunity to let their president know exactly what they thought of him,” Dessem wrote. “They did.”

He and others took pains to point to Trump’s reaction when he realizes he is getting booed – “How about a shot of Trump slowly realizing he’s being booed on the same day he announced the death of the leader of ISIS?” Dessem crowed.. But it does not appear to move him or Melania, who is applauding beside him.

Vox did provide some perspective – namely that presidents are frequently booed on such occasions. President Obama was booed lustily at the All-Star game in 2009, President George W. Bush was booed at a Nationals game in 2008 and his father was booed at the all-star game in San Diego in 1992.

Oddly, Trump was defended by Joe Scarborough and his wife, Mika Brzezinski, who addressed the matter Monday morning on their Morning Joe program on MSNBC. Scarborough called the behavior “just un-American” and said “We are Americans and we do not do that. We do not want the world hearing us chant ‘Lock him up’ to this president or to any president.”  

They did blame Trump for the incident, saying he uses similar language in relation to Hillary Clinton and others at his rallies. “Let’s hope, as we move forward, maybe this is one less fascist tactic he and his supporters use during chants – that you are going to actually imprison your political opponent. So let’s leave that behind.”




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