The University of Illinois has announced a new class for its journalism students: "Trumpaganda: The War on facts, press, and democracy."  According to Newsweek magazine, it is an eight-week course that will "look into Donald Trump's 'disinformation campaign' and his attacks on the mainstream media, examining what the implications are for American democracy and the free press."

Ironic, because I think the mainstream media is its own propaganda machine and the University's journalism program would be better served teaching its students about the pillars of journalism like objectivity, multiple-source corroboration, and the government watchdog role played by journalists (the government as a whole, not just one political party or select politicians).

In college, I took a class on the history of U.S. government propaganda and it transformed the way I viewed and analyzed information.  It taught me to question information, not just take it at face value because it comes from a "trusted source", and it taught me to analyze the information by putting it up against other points of reference.  Dr. Snowball's Propaganda class was the single most important course in my college experience because it equipped me to process information in a fair, confident, and objective way.

The University of Illinois should not be infusing the mainstream media with newly minted anti-Trump journalists.  Teach them how to be objective journalists instead of brainwashing them with the talking points of the Democratic resistance.  The students, American democracy, and the free press will be better served that way.

AM Quad Cities

AM Quad Cities

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