CNN and MSNBC Are Part of the Problem When We Talk About The Danger to Democracy

Faydra Deon
Everyone’s Asleep
6 min readNov 14, 2023


In the video I reference above, Rachel Maddow asks the question, “What is the institution in our country that is going to find” former President Trump’s calls for violence and his fascist rhetoric “intolerable, and is going to see that as something that is happening on its patch, which it needs to fix?”

Rachel Maddow says “it’s his political party.”

I say that’s not the correct answer.

My answer: the media!

However, they are failing miserably at the job.

Let me make it clear that I would venture to guess that ALL news outlets are a danger to democracy at this point in time, but I personally get my news from CNN and MSNBC, so that is why they lead in my title for this piece.

For some reason, many of the hosts on CNN and MSNBC make the point, “Well, we have to cover Trump, because we can’t just ignore what he’s saying,” and then they just add to the noise by doing what they claim Mr. Trump is doing.

Yes, I am asserting that the media is using the same playbook as former President Trump.

Let’s start with the name-calling.

They call former President Trump’s followers crazy and cult-ish. They call Mr. Trump himself deranged, unhinged, out of touch with reality, dangerous, etc. They trot out all these people writing these hundreds-of-pages books about the far right, extremism, fascism and how Mr. Trump is/has eroding/eroded democracy. And…

Therein lies the problem.

They’re preaching to the choir.

It’s just like people who get upset that John Travolta will not speak out against Scientology and its alleged abuses against children, adults and families. They quote him as saying something to the effect of “why would I want to watch something or read something that says negative or bad things about something that has given me great joy and success?”

Different subject. Same concept.

When you start with an insult — like “the four-times indicted, twice-impeached former President” — those who you want to turn away from extremism and violence tune out. They know all that. You don’t have to keep saying it over and over and over and over and over… You get my point.

Just get to the heart of the matter. “He said this at a rally last night in ___. History teaches us that when someone says ____, this is how it affects ____.”


Stop vaguely (and directly) comparing former President Trump to Adolf Hitler. Stop pointing out how Mr. Trump calls dictators smart and strong.

START talking about the history of what happened to the PEOPLE in Nazi Germany. Talk about how even everyday, ordinary Germans were victimized by Nazism when they didn’t tow the party line. Talk about the decent Germans whose children were radicalized and turned their parents in for speaking out against Hitler and Nazism. Talk about the ordinary German citizens who were informed on to the Gestapo by their neighbors just because of jealousy and vindictiveness.

START talking about what everyday, ordinary people in North Korea go through under the leadership of a dictator and how the people of North Korea are taught to hate America and everything it stands for.

Just parroting the things that a person says and then spending three to five minutes talking out your outrage and disgust and what a terrible person he/she/they is/are does not mean anything until you drive home to people how what is being said and/or done directly affects them.

And, all the books?!

I am a veracious reader. I read a lot, but I’m not who the media needs to persuade that former President Trump should not be allowed a second term in The White House.

The type of people the media is trying to reach and “convert” away from extremism are not going to read books being published that trash former President Trump.

Spend some resources reaching out to those convicted for their activities on January 6th. Ask them point blank, “Have you heard from former President Trump or his campaign? Has he or his campaign reached out to you to thank you for sacrificing your freedom for his cause? Did he or his campaign offer to pay any of your legal fees?”

Stop asking people why they support former President Trump. Spend some resources speaking with the so-called MAGA base asking them “How has former President Trump bettered your life? How often have you been invited to Mar-a-Lago? Did you get a better job or more benefits once former President Trump took office? Is daycare more affordable for you? How does attending a Trump rally put more money in your pocket or food on your table? Other than getting to listen to former President Trump speak about what he intends to do if he’s re-elected, how has anything he did as President and is doing now made your life more meaningful and productive?”

Let’s not forget it’s not just the former President who is getting the wrong kind of attention from the media. CNN and MSNBC often glaze over other historical facts as it concerns Republicans they label as fringe or crazy or obstructionist.

Spend way less time talking about the MAGA movement and way more time pointing out exactly what Republicans want to strip away from the non-wealthy, like student loan debt relief that they went all the way to the Supreme Court to kill.

STOP talking about politicians and START showcasing their voting records, and then go further to talk about what that means for working/wage/welfare-class Americans, many of whom are white.

screenshot from YouTube video posted by MSNBC

Call it the Republican Parade on Policy and repeatedly talk about what they’re voting against and for, like “cutting housing subsidies for the poor, medical research and clinical trials for cancer, nutrition for pregnant women, Head Start, the EPA, NASA, the Justice Department, toxic waste cleanup and so much more.”


Why will no one in the media change the narrative and stop ignoring The Voiceless Majority in favor of focusing on former President Trump and The Violent Minority.

Just based on sheer numbers, it will be working/wage/welfare-class white people who are affected by the Republican policies to gut social programs, but the media keeps trotting out all these people of color (particularly African-Americans) when they talk to people about how what Republicans are doing is bad for America. CNN had a whole series about gun violence in America, and the majority of the people they showcased were Black. Why isn’t the media pointing out that the majority of victims of mass shootings in America are white? The media feeds the narrative that it is only minorities who will be affected by fewer weapons of war on the streets and the ending of social programs.

The bottom line…

The media has truth and history on its side. It does not need to indict former President Trump and the MAGA Republicans and base in the court of public opinion.

All the media needs to do is present the words and deeds of these people — without commentary or controversy — and then make it very plain and clear that the only way American democracy survives is through unity and not divisiveness.



Faydra Deon
Everyone’s Asleep

Christ-follower; Author, Blogger, Publisher, Most-Things-Web Consultant, Web Designer/Developer/Instructor, contributed to the GoDaddy blog