Are Reporters Really the Enemy?

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Journalism is under fire since President Trump called them ‘the enemy of the people.’ However, does Trump have a point?  Is bias in journalism hurting our democracy or is Trump out of bounds in his criticism?

The Rampage asked a prominent local journalist for his opinions and feedback. Robert Guaderrama has been a reporter for 12 years and currently is a reporter with Fox 35 in Lake Mary, Florida.

Do you think news channels are biased?

“I think it’s possible every news channel, you know some have certain pressures that make them lean one way or another. I think you know a real journalist and a journalist who cares about morals and ethics, they will be able to fight any kind of bias because that’s what we do on a daily basis. Even though we are getting pulled left and right, even out of the scene of breaking news or like you said politics… we have to go out there and really be middle of the road. That’s how journalism is done accurately and responsibly.”

Do you think reporters are cherry-picking the bad stories about Trump or only the good stories about Biden to try and persuade the public to vote for a certain person?

“It would be more the campaign, you know the campaigns are trying to put stories out there that only highlight the negative or just the positive. There are two sides to every story.”

Is it the reporter’s job to choose a side in politics when it comes to reporting it to the public, or should they just try and avoid their opinion and give straight facts to the public?

“If you’re doing it correctly, if you are practicing journalism the way it should be practiced, you should not put any of your opinions in your reporting, granted there are some situations where it’s okay. When the anchors cut to me it’s okay to say something like ‘Oh gosh, this is terrible.’ I can show my opinion there, but in a story where you are presenting facts like politics or an issue voters are deciding on, that’s really where you’ve got to stay in the middle and can’t show any emotion or opinion.”

Should reporters be objective or is it ok to take a side?

“Reporters have opinions on things and that’s good because you have to have an opinion to be able to start questioning things and that’s what we do we question everything. You just can’t let your opinion fill into how you say things or talk to people or how you report.”

How has journalism changed since you started your career?

“Have been a reporter for 12 years and it has changed drastically. When I started out, social media barely existed. During my career, social media has basically taken over and now that is where people go for their news. What worries me is all of the fake news out there. 80% or 90% of the news on social media is biased and just totally inaccurate.”

Do you ever have to worry about political correctness when you write?

“Oh boy that is all day, every day. What we write could make or break a person’s career. Sometimes it could even make or break a person’s life, so we have to watch everything we say and the way we say it. People used to trust us and really believed in us to be reporting accurately, but in the last five years, that has totally shifted.”