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Primary Concerns Episode 37: Digging In for a Fight

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Donald Trump is going to be president. When he reaches the Oval Office, he will be as hellbent on accumulating power, at the expense of liberal values, as he was on the campaign trail. Many things will get in his way, and when they do, he will try to crush them. This is not a drill. The real test of our democratic institutions has just begun.

One of those institutions is the free press. Our free press has taken its liberty for granted for so long that it has lost the muscle memory required to defend itself. As civil society regroups and prepares to resist Trump’s encroachment on democracy, everyone needs to stop and think and internalize what their role in this brave new world is.

Washington Post media columnist Margaret Sullivan has some thoughts on how to do that. We sat down with her at Post headquarters to sketch out a game plan.

Further reading:

  • Margaret Sullivan sees a grave threat to our First Amendment rights, and issues a call to action to journalists covering Donald Trump. “I worry whether journalistic organizations—including this one—will continue to challenge a man who has shown how little taste he has for anything except adulation.”
  • In the New Republic Brian Beutler argues that when Trump does anything aberrant, it’s crucial to identify the value or truth he’s traducing, and defend it.