President Donald Trump has "turned words into weapons" -- and journalists are providing additional ammunition.
That's according to Trump critic George Lakoff, a renowned linguist and professor emeritus at the University of California at Berkeley. Lakoff wrote in a recent article for the Guardian that the president manipulates language to control the public narrative. The press, he said, functions as a sort of "marketing agency for [Trump's] ideas" by repeating his claims, even when trying to fact-check or debunk his statements.
"By faithfully transmitting Trump's words and ideas, the press helps him to attack, and thereby control, the press itself," he writes.
As the guest on this week's Reliable Sources podcast, Lakoff spoke to Brian Stelter about Trump's linguistic frames, what the press should do differently, and why journalists need to tackle Trump's words like a "truth sandwich."
How online shopping and cheap prices are turning Americans into hoarders
The irony of reading this given the material I’ve been reading about materialism and minimalism lately. I think that just today I threw out about 50 pounds of old junk I didn’t need and have piles of old, well-used things that have gone past their useful lives to me.
People keep fettering while I’m always unfettering….
How leaders lose mental capacities—most notably for reading other people—that were essential to their rise
This is an impressive thesis and area for research. I’m impressed with their restraint in not making a single mention of Donald Trump here who would be a sterling example, particularly given his background, bullying behavior, and complete lack of any empathy.