Jessica Kramer, DCNF
TV networks are hiring security guards for reporters in an effort to better protect them during Trump rallies because they believe Trump has turned the media into “a rhetorical punching bag.”
“The New York Times takes the safety of our reporters very seriously,” New York Times spokeswoman Danielle Rhoades Ha told Politico, adding that in recent months “we have expanded measures to protect our journalists against the overall backdrop of increased threats and verbal attacks.”
Politico pointed out NBC White House correspondent Geoff Bennett posed with a security guard for a photo on Instagram at a Trump rally in Ohio on Aug. 4 and 5, captioning it: “We need security guards when covering rallies hosted by the President of the United States. Let that sink in.”
Violent attacks on reporters have been conducted by members of Antifa, including one demonstration in the California Bay Area that left a journalist bloody and beaten. Another reporter in the same area was also confronted by demonstrators who stole his phone and demanded he say if he was a Nazi.
Some media outlets are increasing precautions and protocol since the Capital Gazette shooting and the president’s rhetoric in opposition to the “fake news” media. Most security details or changes to safety protocol are remaining private, media companies told Politico.
“What you do not see are the nasty letters or packages or emails. The threats of physical violence,” MSNBC’s Katy Tur told Politico. “‘I hope you get raped and killed,’ one person wrote to me just this week. ‘Raped and killed.’ Not just me, but a couple of my female colleagues as well,” said Tur, according to Politico.