The Forward, a Jewish newspaper in circulation since 1897, has put in place a 24-hour moratorium on all coverage of presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump beginning at 5 a.m. Tuesday.
The newspaper’s strong stance comes in the wake of what editor-in-chief Jane Eisner calls “the rising threat level against journalists who are Jewish or who are perceived to be” in an announcement posted to the pub’s website.
Attempts were made to contact Eisner. An email and phone call were not returned.
The Forward has a history of asking tough questions and being critical of Trump this election cycle. Eisner mentions the commonplace harassment of anti-Trump journalists on the internet by members of the alt-right, a subset of the conservative community that has repeatedly displayed strong anti-Semitic sentiments online.
Eisner recognizes that the steps taken by her paper are “symbolic” but stands by her decision to make “a show of solidarity” with journalists who have been threatened and targeted online for expressing their opinions.
The Washington Post reports that although online bullies continually violate Twitter’s terms of service, threatening and harassing reporters – conservative or liberal-leaning – who take stances against Trump, Twitter fails to remove their accounts in a timely or efficient manner.
Earlier this month, NYT reporter Jonathan Weisman quit Twitter after vile neo-Nazi accounts featuring imagery of swastikas and concentration camps hurled vitriol at him in the wake of posting an article that “discussed the emergence of fascism in the United States.”
Julia Ioffe faced similar abuse after she published an investigative piece in GQ provided revealing details about Melania Trump and her family.
From my inbox. Subject line: “They know about you!” pic.twitter.com/zp3v2GjTeI
— Julia Ioffe (@juliaioffe) April 28, 2016
The Huffington Post noted earlier this month that the media’s “obsessive coverage” of Trump’s run for the Oval Office was a valuable aid to his meteoric rise to the nomination. Which is why they initially demeaned him by placing them next to Kim Kardashian in their entertainment coverage. In keeping a silence on Trump for today, Eisner and her staff at The Forward are trying to steer the conversation elsewhere.
UPDATE: Asked whether or not The Forward would break its silence if a large-scale story about Trump were to emerge during the 24-hour period, Eisner told The Mirror by email, “I appreciate your question but I can’t respond to a hypothetical. I can only say that we are refraining from covering the Trump campaign during this 24-hour period. Thank you.”