Reporters Apology to First Lady Melania Trump is Too Little Too Late
The New York Times was once considered to be the gold standard of journalism known as the newspaper of record not only in the United States, but worldwide – a news source whose owners, editors and reporting staff are professionally above reproach and may be cited with authority.
But that was a long time ago when reporters actually verified information through multiple sources and took care with the words they wrote, when editors took equal care with the articles they approved and owners guarded the paper’s reputation for truth.
The Times has long since ceased to be an unbiased source of news or non-partisan reporting and in August, two months before the election, Media Reporter, Jim Rutenberg, wrote, “If you view a Trump presidency as something that’s potentially dangerous, then your reporting is going to reflect that.”
The liberal stance of The New York Times was no secret to businessman Donald Trump when he made the decision to become candidate Donald Trump, but it’s doubtful he anticipated the depth to which the paper would sink to find ways to undermine and attack him throughout year-long primary campaign waged against 16 Republican establishment challengers and then the grueling four-month general election campaign against Democrat presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton.
The incoming president didn’t know how low the press could go.
The Times printed three-pages of an illegally obtained single year tax return and ran “fake news” stories on Trump’s children, his cabinet picks and his staff even after he held a meeting with them two weeks after the November election to discuss better relations in the future.
Just three weeks after she became First Lady, Melanie Trump learned that a New York Times reporter had been overheard at a New York Fashion Week Event telling people that she is a “hooker.”
There was no word of the reaction of the mother of a ten-year-old, a former model from Slovenia who retains her stunning looks and figure 11 years after she married the brash billionaire builder never expecting she would be forced into the spotlight when he decided to enter politics for the first time in 2015.
American supermodel and actress Emily Ratajkowski broke the story when she tweeted about the incident to her 989,000 Twitter followers the day, although she did not name the reporter.
“Sat next to a journalist from the NYT last night who told me, ‘Melania is a hooker.’ Whatever your politics it’s crucial to call this out for what it is: slut shaming. I don’t care about her nudes or sexual history and no one should. Gender specific attacks are disgusting sexist bullshit.”
By Tuesday, after readers, including journalism professors had demanded the Times take action, Jacob Bernstein, the 37-year-old son of half of the Washington Post reporting team of Woodward and Bernstein, revealed that he was the unnamed reporter who had defamed the First Lady.
Bernstein in a series of four tweets, took responsibility for his comments and acknowledged that he had been “reprimanded” by his New York Times editors, but excused himself by saying he had been under the impression the comment was private.
The problem with the “apology” was, basically, that it was anything but an apology.
Calling it a “stupid remark,” Bernstein chalked it up to “unfounded rumors” while making it clear the motivation for the apology was that his “editors have made it clear my behavior was not in keeping with the standards of the Times, and I agree.”
Although he ended by tweeting, “I apologize profusely,” conspicuously missing from the four tweets were the simple words, “Dear Mrs. Trump, I am sorry.”
Times spokeswoman, Eileen Murphy, said paper would have “no further comment.”
Mrs. Trump recently won a settlement from a blogger for posting that she had been an “escort” prior to her marriage and a $150 million lawsuit against the UK paper that printed the blog, The Daily Mail, is pending.