Dear Journalist and Aspiring Journalists (or anyone reading this)
First, take a deep breath.
Inhale ... Exhale
First, I would like to introduce myself. My name is Zayrha Rodriguez, sophomore in college, and an International Relations or Journalism major (depending of the day), and for over eight years, I knew I wanted to be journalist. I liked the idea of traveling, meeting new people, talking to others and informing others. I had no idea the key role journalism played in society.
My first hands-on journalistic experience was in my sophomore year in high school, when I took my first journalism class. While it was more about theory and history, I had the opportunity to interview, write, and design. From that class I took with me that readers may not agree with my beliefs and people in power do not want anything negative to see the light. My job is to bring light to many issues.
In the last months the "media" has being called WRONG, biased, liars, and "fake news" by the new administration. While "fake news" caused real problems, like the shooting in the D.C. pizzeria, not everything that is published is "fake news" like our President elect likes to say. We have seen how the POTUS is trying to belittle journalist just because they do not agree with him. We have seen how he avoids his press conferences and questions and witness the mistreating of journalists from different outlets.
It has been less than a week since the new administration took office, and now we have something called "alternative facts." In my personal view, these "alternative facts" are lies told by a government wanting to control the narrative and do not respect the freedom of the press in the first amendment. During his campaign, President Donald Trump was able to say whatever he wanted by using his freedom of the speech. If he can say all the things he said or did not mention - because accordingly to him they were just sound bites - we should be able to report on him to the facts and by the comments coming from his or his administration.
I understand that sometimes the journalist could make mistakes, but having a war with journalists can be destructive for the American people. Both identities are there you keep each other accountable, but most important to serve the American people. If you are currently reporting on the new administration or hoping to do so in a couple of years, remember that our primary goal in to keep the people informed. As a journalist, we need to unite, regardless of political affiliation and look at the "alternative facts" and ask about the issues until we get a clear answer.