On Sunday, The Washington Post cut into America’s happy time during the Super Bowl to run a self-serving ad. Narrated by Hollywood movie star Tom Hanks, the ad dealt with the importance of journalism. And Donald Trump Jr. had the perfect response.
“You know how MSM journalists could avoid having to spend millions on a #superbowl comercial to gain some undeserved credibility?” the president’s son said on Twitter. “How about report the news and not their leftist BS for a change.”
To the tune of $5 million, the minute-long ad portrays the Jeff Bezos-owned newspaper like a lone avenger of truth in a world marked by darkness. At one point, the ad highlights terrorism, using the Oklahoma City bombing as an example rather than the attack on the World Trade Center — perhaps, one wonders, due to the nature of the attacks’ perpetrators.
Hanks says in the ad, “When we go off to war, when we exercise our rights, when we soar to our greatest heights, when we mourn and pray, when our neighbors are at risk, when our nation is threatened — there’s someone to gather the facts, to bring you the story — no matter the cost, because knowing empowers us.”
“Knowing helps us decide. Knowing keeps us free,” he added.
In a statement prior to the ad, Washington Post CEO Fred Ryan said in a statement that the Super Bowl ad was to be a “milestone” tribute to journalists.
“The Super Bowl is a remarkable moment to recognize the courage and commitment of journalists around the world that is so essential to our democracy,” said Fred Ryan. “While most Super Bowl ad producers have the better part of a year, we had the lesser part of a week, but with an event this big, we decided to seize the opportunity to make this a milestone moment in our ongoing campaign to highlight reporters’ work and the importance of press freedom.”
According to HuffPost, Donald Trump Jr. took a great deal of heat on Twitter for daring to blast The Washington Post’s defense of journalism. That defense included a tribute to the slain “journalist” Jamal Khashoggi, who supported the Muslim Brotherhood and cried over the death of Osama bin Laden — a checkered past that even The New York Times had to admit as such.
New York Times/Washington Post contributor Ahmed Baba tweeted in response to Trump Jr.: “This how the President’s child reacted to The Washington Post’s #SuperBowl commercial that honored journalists, including those who lost their lives like Jamal Khashoggi. Trying to discredit the media won’t change the fact you lied to Congress junior.”
Of course, none of Trump Jr.’s critics seemed to care that The Washington Post spent $5 million on that ad after recently laying off 1,200 people from their jobs. As Splinter rightly noted, “In the last week, there have been mass layoffs at HuffPost, Buzzfeed, Gannett, Vice, and McClatchy. Maybe some of the money the Post spent on the ad should have been reserved for the Post’s freelance budget, to pay some of the newly laid-off journalists for the reporting they so admire.”