The Stage-Crafted Martyrdom of Jorge Ramos

August 26th, 2015 2:23 PM

Tuesday night’s surreal exchange between Univision/Fusion anchor Jorge Ramos and GOP presidential frontrunner Donald Trump was the greatest single example of what happens at the intersection of journalism, agenda advocacy, political partisanship, and special business interests.

It also provided us with a factual basis that further undergirds, bolsters, and confirms our previous coverage of Jorge Ramos. Let’s start with some Jorge Ramos tweets from earlier Wednesday:

These tweets are intended to bolster Ramos’ version of events as aired on Fusion and Univision, which is that he came to the event, got credentials, went to the presser and began his inquiry after one or two questions were asked before being removed from the event. But Ramos’ assertions don’t withstand even the most basic of scrutiny.

Trump entered the presser, took one question before introducing his national campaign co-chair and policy adviser, and called on another reporter. At that time Ramos jumped in, and chaos ensued.

Contrary to Ramos’ assertions, he did NOT ask questions, but interrupted the press conference in order to shout a series of statements at Trump, namely, “you can NOT deport 11 million”, “you can NOT deport U.S. citizens”, and “you can NOT build a wall”.  In all fairness, I listened to see if there was an actual question before Ramos launched into his “can nots”, but I heard none. I heard a lot of framing of questions, and many assertions of his rights, but no actual questions in that first exchange.

Now, for some facts:

Ramos does not normally leave the comforts of his Miami citadel, unless it is for assignments of his own choosing. He certainly does not pound the pavement along with the press corps that is covering the campaign trail. When you consider this fact along with his actions at the press conference, the only reasonable conclusion is that this entire incident was pre-planned and pre-crafted for maximum impact and ratings.

Reasonable people can agree or disagree on Trump’s handling of Ramos’ heckling but there should be no disagreement that it was heckling which needed to be dealt with. Ramos’ behavior was not that of a journalist asking tough questions of a presidential campaign, but of an activist looking to heckle his target out of the room. In fact, it is no stretch to say that Ramos’ behavior bore more resemblance to that of activist Jennicet Gutiérrez than of any journalist.

Ramos just wanted to heckle, grab attention, and feed into a martyrdom complex upon receiving pushback. Of course he did, aided and abetted by his enablers in the mainstream media. “I am a journalist and my job is to ask questions. No, we are not going to sit down and we are not going to go away.”

There are some who will undoubtedly elevate Ramos to Rosa Parks-like levels of brave resistance…but such efforts would be severely misguided. Ramos’ entitled claims of persecution and verbally violent victimization are an insult to actual journalists who endure actual violence, such as those who die at the hands of the Mexican cartels, those who are butchered by radical jihadists, and even the news crew tragically murdered this morning in Virginia.

For Jorge Ramos, Trump was a target that was convenient to his agenda, pure and simple. It also appears that his appetite for tough questions is selective at best.

With this incident, Jorge Ramos has shattered his credibility as a journalist. Of course, he was well aware of that risk.