|Source: The Tennessean|
Tuesday, October 20, 2015
Up Like Donald Trump
Succès de scandale.
Pardon my French. To put it in modern English terms, I should have started out by saying, ‘There is no such thing as bad publicity.’
I think this absolutely applies to the leader in the recent republican primary polls, Donald Trump.
An animated orator with a fascinating financial background, Trump is attracting the media arguably more than any other presidential candidate ever has.
And while other candidates struggle to make themselves known among the public, Trump has a following. Figuratively and literally.
Trump doesn’t need commercials explaining who he is and what he stands for, because he has been in the public eye for years now. As a businessman, he can factor out those “first day of school” approaches and focus on other momentous political events to spend on.
He also has a Twitter presence massive enough to reach 4.63 million people, while fellow republican rival Ben Carson’s tweets only reach a direct population of 788 thousand.
While Trump’s claim to run for president was at first taken as seriously as Kanye West’s recent announcement, the media have fueled his campaign from a joke to a serious leader.
Think about it. From the start, journalists explained his run had no chance. Yet they covered his every word, every press conference, every radical statement on social media, to where his name started to become synonymous with potential presidential candidate.
You may argue then since he is so vulnerable to coverage, his wrongdoings, secrets and controversial stances will be spread throughout the public to judge his actions.
While this is true, Trump then has nothing to hide. His troubles in life have already been made known to viewers. Heck, he even accepts them and uses his negative experiences as leverage by bringing them back up and explaining how he has overcome/combated them.
None of his young mistakes, divorces, bankruptcies, or business fallacies will come as a surprise to potential voters, because they already know of them.
There is no process of shock to Trump’s negative portrayal, because it’s already out there. His scandals are like an open book; there won’t be any sort of sharp decline in the polls due to the media expressing one of his scandals.
So the real question becomes: How should the media handle the coverage of Trump’s campaign?
Well, they cannot stop reporting on Trump. He is in the running as the republican presidential nominee, so it would be unethical to shut him out of the news scope entirely.
They can, however, do a better job of determining what is newsworthy and what is not when it comes to the words that pour out of Trump’s mouth.
Extending the coverage of other candidates can be another option. There is more to political races than the one politician who can make headlines and get views for a publication.
It should be about exploring new and interesting ideas from the entire pool candidates; regardless of whether they are famous or not.
The media should not be allowed to represent the elections as a popularity contest between the highest profiles and what crazy thing they might say next.
But for now, the media are falling right into the hands of Trump and his campaign, as they anxiously await the next radical byte they can feed to the public.