What, exactly, does that mean?
Well, first, let's take a look at the 1st Amendment":
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.Well, briefly, in order, it tells us that CONGRESS shall make no law
1. Establishing religion.
2. Prohibiting the free exercise of religion
3. Abridging (curtailing or restricting) free speech
4. Restricting the press.
5. Restricting the right of the people to peaceably assemble
6. Restricting the right to petition government for a redress of grievances.
Powerful stuff, that. You'll note that the first right in the 1st Amendment is the right to practice your religion without restriction.
Yet, we have a great many restrictions on that practice. There's a huge number of "can'ts." There's a large number of "have too," and over the last two terms, the Obama Administration treated religious organizations as if they were no different than any other business.
The press, being the press, didn't care... except to join in with the Administration they were so vested in to pound religious organizations and businesses who did not align themselves with the gay agenda... God help you if you won't bake a cake or do a flower arrangement for a same sex marriage... Constitutional Protections notwithstanding.
Freedom of speech is a misnomer in that we do not, nor should we, have an absolute right to say or write anything we please.
I can't threaten harm to anyone here. I can't threaten to kill someone, or injure them, or to blow up, say, the county administration building.
In short, freedom of speech does not preclude freedom of regulation. As such, we do not have any innate ability to say whatever, whenever, we believe it to be appropriate: the yelling of "fire" in a movie theater comes to mind.
There are no known enforced restrictions on the press per se'; so they invent their own and run around screaming "freedom of the press!" as if it were some master key they can turn on whenever and however they please.
In short, our freedom of speech does not come with freedom of responsibility for what we say and when... and how... we say it.
Yet, on those occasions where the media desires to lie, to exaggerate, to twist, to misrepresent, to attack those their biases demand (Think Lefty Lou Brancaccio attacking David Madore every other word or so for the past several years) the bar to hold these scum accountable is so high that it's almost impossible to cross over it.
So, when the media and the left start whining about the President violating freedom of the press as if they're on some pedestal and making the inevitable (and mostly false) comparisons between President Trump and Hitler, remember that there are no absolutes when it comes to "freedom," particularly that variety that precludes being held responsible for what you write, or say, or present on TV.
And was it an abridgement of the freedom of the press when Obama spied on reporters to, for example, James Rosen of FoxNEWS?
I believe it's far more of such an act of restricting the press than anything President Trump has done.
And where was the "press's" actual outrage over THAT effort to restrict the press?
No where. Because they were vested in the Obama presidency, which is part and parcel of why they were... and continue to be.... the very thing the President has defined them to be: enemies of the people.
The press has a privileged place in our society. Academically, they perform a valuable function when they actual practice journalism instead of advocacy.
For years now, they've been expanding their envelope of replacing facts with their fiction, carefully crafted to achieve their agenda. Again, at the local level, the political assassination of David Madore stands as an example of the kind of abuse of position... the variety of tyranny that the left professes to loath... but only when it's aimed at those they support... never when it is used as a weapon against those they oppose.
Historically, when dictators want to cement power or rise to it, they take a much more active role in controlling... or in the alternative, silencing the press.
If reporters are spied upon the way the Obama Administration spied on them or put them on the terror watch list, then yes.... that is a problem. Although whatever outrage the media manufactured over those despicable episodes was short-lived t non-existent to be sure...
If reporters are arrested. If reporters are killed. If their news organizations are shut down by the government... then we have an issue with press freedom.
But excluding lying scum from certain briefings is no more an affront to press freedom than Obama's incessant attacks against FOXNews.
So, here's a hint:
Media, if you want to be given access... just tell the truth.
Don't embellish one way or the other. Knock off the advocacy. Treat both sides of politics the EXACT, SAME, WAY.
Knock of even the APPEARANCE of favoritism.
Let along the actual variety routinely practiced at almost every level.
Understand that we are not stupid: we can think for ourselves and that the reality is that you people in the media are no smarter than we are.
Hillary lost the election for a variety of reasons, including the fact that she was a terrible candidate. And understand that she lost in spite of the media's best efforts.... their corruption.
The media must gain an understanding that they are NOT the smartest people in the room.
I wish the media was believable. I wish we, as a people, could trust them.
But we all know at some level that we can't.
The President is merely holding them accountable. They don't like it... but who does?
That they aren't thrilled by it? Cry me a river.