Obama and Wilmore humiliated the media hard at the White House Correspondent’s Dinner
“Welcome to Negro night here, or as Fox News will report, Two Thugs Interrupted Elegant Dinner in Washington, D.C.” That’s how host Larry Wilmore kicked off the 2016 WHCD this past Saturday night.
Over the years, the White House Correspondent’s Dinner had been reserved for the President to make light of his own shortcomings and poke fun at both his political friends and rivals. Over Obama’s term though, I’ve noticed a shift toward not only making fun of the corporate media, but downright insulting it.
Since Ronald Reagan stopped enforcing the Fairness Doctrine, the media has been all about making money, not reporting the news as we used to know it. For every activist demanding that money be removed from politics, there is another demanding money be removed from our news media.
Trust for the media hit an all-time low in 2015 and it certainly hasn’t gotten any better. The media was complacent in the build up to the Iraq War and it is now mostly responsible for Donald Trump’s success in the Republican Primary.
“I don’t want to spend too much time on the Donald, following your lead, I want to show some restraint. Because from the start, I think he’s received the right amount of coverage, fitting the seriousness of his campaign. I hope you’re all proud of yourselves. The guy wanted to give his hotel business a boost, and now we’re praying that Cleveland makes it through July.” – Barack Obama
Oh, how the truth hurts. When Obama first started his time as President, I remember most of the focus being on the bias and absurdities of Fox News. Now they can all be seen as equally incompetent.
“As you know, ‘Spotlight’ is a film about investigative journalists with the resources, the autonomy, to chase down the truth and hold the powerful accountable… Best fantasy film since Star Wars.” – Barack Obama
It’s been clear for years now that journalism in America is suffering. The media not only chooses what we see and hear, but it also picks a side to hear from.
“Frankly Donald Trump, his campaign is inspiring mass violence. And whenever I turn on the TV, I see Trump’s family campaigning for him, gushing all over him. Or as it’s also known as ‘Morning Joe.'”
It isn’t the journalists themselves who are at fault per se, with the exception of Joe Scarborough maybe, but they all need jobs. The problem starts further up. It’s about ratings, keeping the sponsors happy and keeping the money flowing in. Few people can still call it news.
“I’ve been watching CNN a long time. Used to watch it back when it was a news network.” – Larry Wilmore
Now it seems all the major media outlets want to emulate the old Fox News model of creating the news rather than reporting it. I can’t imagine what America will be like down the road when everyone conforms to the so-called “most trusted name in news”
“MSNBC is here tonight. Which now stands for Missing a Significant Number of Black Correspondents… MSNBC got rid of so many black people I thought Boko Haram was running that network.” – Larry Wilmore
When many of these jokes landed at the White House Correspondent’s Dinner they were met with either groans of disgust or the sound of cricket noise. At one point Wilmore commented “You guys are tough, man.”
Perhaps the reason behind the groans and cricket noise lies with the fact that they aren’t so much jokes as they are sad truths. But I understand why the media couldn’t even laugh at themselves on this particular night. All they could do is sit there and take it while their big media bosses’ shadows were cast over them.
Well done Obama and Wilmore, as usual…