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PEN America Sues President Trump Over Alleged Stifling of Free Speech

It’s no secret that President Trump has some animosity towards certain news outlets, media firms, and publications, dismissing criticisms directed as him as “fake news”. Now, the writers of PEN America are fighting back with a law-suit, alleging that Trump has abused his political powers in efforts to block writers, journalists, and newscasters from distributing their work to the public, and otherwise issuing threats against said parties.

 

 

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Image via PBS

 

In an open letter posted on PEN America’s official website, the writer’s group has revealed their sentiments in full detail. The letter addresses Trump’s record of threatening and defaming publications, several journalists, and many books that have been critical of his leadership. The letter goes on to say:

 

President Trump’s tirades against the press are not new. His cries of ‘fake news’ are an almost daily occurrence. The White House has called for individual journalists to be fired, and the president has referred to the media as ‘the enemy of the American people.’ This has created an environment of hostility toward the media wherein journalists have been subject to death threats, needed bodyguards to cover political rallies, and have faced attacks in their newsrooms. The president has also threatened book publishers and authors who have published critical volumes. 

 

The letter describes the effects of the president’s alleged behavior, stating that many authors and journalists now think twice before releasing any critical pieces in fear that they may lose their jobs or worse. Among the many reasons for the lawsuit discussed in the letter are Trump’s disruption of a merger involving CNN parent company Time Warner and increased rates for Jeff Bezos’ company Amazon due to Bezos’ owning of the Washington Post.

 

 

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Image via Andrew Solomon

 

 

The President has yet to respond to the lawsuit at the time this article is being written.

 

 

 

Featured Image via PEN America