The intolerant mob

Tracy Watkins writes:

Yet my fear is that as a country we have become less tolerant of ideas and differences in the weeks since; our politics even more tribal and blinkered than it ever was.

In recent weeks I’ve written editorials that have prompted a deluge of emails and comments on social calling me a traitor and accusing me or treason and worse for criticising or questioning the government.

Individual journalists who ask hard questions at press conferences often get singled out for abuse.

It worries me to think that the social media clobbering machine is now so feared that younger reporters feel you have to be brave to question or criticise politicians or the bureaucrats who – literally – have our lives in their hands.

And yet we have seen overseas that its effect is powerful enough to cost journalists their jobs, so I can hardly blame them for being worried.

Of course the pressure is not just from the public. The NYT Opinion Editor lost his job because other NYT staff were unhappy he allowed a Republican Senator to write an op ed they disagreed with.

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