United States

United States

Unprecedented violence targets journalists

Visit the U.S. Press Freedom Tracker

Press freedom has continued to decline in the second year of President Donald Trump’s presidency. Rhetorical attacks from the government and private individuals alike grew increasingly hostile, and in June they became physical when a gunman entered the Capital Gazette newsroom in Maryland, killing four journalists and one other staffer in a targeted attack on the local newspaper. Since then, President Trump has continued to declare the press as the “enemy of the American people” and “fake news” in an apparent attempt to discredit critical reporting. At least one White House correspondent has hired private security for fear of their life after receiving death threats, and newsrooms throughout the country have been plagued by bomb threats and were the recipients of other potentially dangerous packages, prompting journalism organizations to reconsider the security of their staffs in a uniquely hostile environment. The Trump administration repeatedly attempted to deny journalists access to events of public interest in 2018, breaking multiple records for the span of time without a White House press briefing, denying a CNN reporter access to an open-press White House event and even revoking reporter Jim Acosta’s press pass, which was only restored by court order. Meanwhile, the nation still waits for the Trump administration to hold the Saudi authorities responsible for the murder of Washington Post contributor Jamal Khashoggi, who was brutally killed in Saudi Arabia’s Turkish consulate in October.

in the 2019 World Press Freedom Index



45 in 2018

Global score


23.73 in 2018

  • 0
    journalists killed in 2020
  • 0
    citizens journalists killed in 2020
  • 0
    media assistants killed in 2020
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