United States Policy Shift and tolerance for journalism

The United States President, Donald Trump is fulfilling his campaign promises and concentrating on safeguarding the American interest. In the days since his inauguration, he is showing his people that he means every word he promised. In a bid to boost local manufacturing and lure offshore companies and jobs back to the U.S., President, Donald Trump’s first steps involved offering industries substantial cuts in taxes and regulations. He further showed his commitment by pulling out of the 2015 Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal, TPP, which was mediated by the Democratic-elect President Barak Obama. TPP, however, hadn’t received a congressional approval.

TPP was a trade partnership between 12 countries along the Pacific Ocean to foster trade. The Trans-Pacific bloc represented 40 per cent of the international trade volume. Once ratified, this were to be double the size of E.U. market and promised promoting business opportunities through tariff cuts, guaranteed environmental protection and workers’ rights. But the recent decision was made in response to the opponents of TPP who saw the partnership as supportive of large corporations and not the American worker. United States pull out has raised anticipation of China to play a lead role in a partnership they were initially excluded from.

President Trump also signed directives for the erection of a wall along the 3000 km border of Mexico. The wall is meant to keep the country safe and stem the flow of drugs, crime and illegal immigrants from the neighbouring country. The construction of the wall is expected to begin this month. U.S President iterated that Mexico will bear the building cost of the wall.

The great wall of Mexico could prove an effort by the U.S. President at renegotiating North American Free Trade Agreement, NAFTA, amid looming fear that NAFTA could meet the same fate as TPP. Immigration and security at borders are the key NAFTA issues for President Trump. Former President Obama was also critical of NAFTA during his presidential campaign.

President Trump’s person was disputed right from his presidential campaign and his recent Executive Orders have been viewed by the world with abated breath. Will the U.S Congressional House of representatives and Senate go along with their president is yet to be seen. While it is true you can’t make an omelet without breaking eggs, how these decisions pan out only time can tell. One thing is certain: the rhetoric of United States is going to change and we are to witness a different leadership from the great country.

However, Truth Tracker will like to speak on behalf of the six journalists apprehended on felony charges on the inauguration day of President Trump. Police had picked up these journalists while reporting the unrests preceding and following the presidential inauguration from the country’s capital. If convicted, these journalists may face up to 10 years in prison and $25,000 in fine. The charges against all six journalists are insubstantial. International organisation, the Committee to Protect Journalists, CPJ, has called on the authorities in Washington to drop the charges on the journalists covering protests.

United States is a great country and has inspired great journalism in the developing world. Freedom of speech in journalism has been viewed as its flagship. We hope that these standards remain and that the criticism to policy shifts in Washington is tolerated if not welcomed, as has been the tradition in the United States of America for decades.

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