OPINION: Voters reign supreme, but the media didn't fail

THE media did not see Donald Trump's incredible victory in the crystal balls we buy from the gods of fortune.

But it did not fail.

Those that endorsed failed candidate Hillary Clinton and rebuked Donald Trump for his comments on women, for his wall-building ambitions and for his plan to "track all Muslims" did not fail US voters.

This is what scrutiny looks like.


If a man wants to become the leader of the free world, the most powerful figure on the planet, he is put under the magnifying glass.

Journalists do not pull the lever, colour in the circle or punch the hole that casts the vote.

That is done by those in the booth. And it is sacred.

The decision made by US voters is also sacred, no matter the result.

Protesting the decision made by millions does nothing but dishonour democracy.


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The pollsters had no idea what was coming.

The media relies on the pollsters for its best guess. And while those guesses turned out to be hilariously wrong, there were no better guesses to rely on.

That is not to say all journalists were purely objective or neutral, nor should they be.

The role of the journalist is not simply to deliver information, but to make sense of it and to put it in context.

A great journalist or news outlet will pull together those threads carefully to illustrate what direction we are going and why.

That context showed Trump to be unpredictable and inconsistent

It showed us a man who had little interest in facts or details.

What a person takes into that ballot box -- their fear, love, hatred or joy -- is all their own.

And in that moment, millions upon millions voted for Trump.

Maybe they voted for him because they felt like someone was finally fighting for them, or fighting against something they despised.

Clinton and Trump invited scrutiny when they entered this race.

And if journalists and others are doing their job, that scrutiny will be applied to Trump, his team and his opponents for the entire presidency.

Otherwise, they really would have failed.


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