These early days of the Trump presidency are frightening times for two values that I hold dear: Judaism and journalism. Since Trump was elected, there has been a troubling surge in anti-Semitism, most dramatically in the desecration of Jewish cemeteries in St. Louis and Philadelphia. And journalism, already reeling from a huge economic disruption, is now labeled by the president himself as “the enemy of the American people.”
Such acts against Jews and such rhetoric against the press send chills down my spine. In totalitarian regimes, Jews and the press are often the first victims.
At times like this, I take solace in the work of two men, both of them named Jake. They are both Jewish, both graduates of Jewish day schools and both started out in other professions before finding their way to journalism. My heroes these days are Jake Tapper of CNN and Jake Turx of Ami.
Turx is well known to the Ami community. He has become something of a media star since he asked a question of President Trump at a press conference at the White House on February 16. He wrote about his experience last week in Ami and was also profiled in The New York Times, CNN and Fox News.