Press Releases

New York City Bar Association Statement on the President’s Targeting of the Free Press

The New York City Bar Association is alarmed by the President’s increasingly dangerous rhetoric targeting the American press and makes this statement both to condemn those attacks and express its support for all members of the media who continue to ask probing questions and press for answers from those in government. We should never forget that journalists stand as a proxy for all Americans. 

More than forty years before the Declaration of Independence, the people of New York rejected the Colonial Governor William Cosby’s efforts to imprison John Peter Zenger for daring to write truthful criticism of the government. Since that time, we in New York City have been steadfast in our commitment to the rights of freedom of speech and of the press. Those rights are foundational to our republic because they foster debate, encourage discussion and allow citizens to make informed decisions about their lives and their government. They are the crown jewels of the American Constitution and set us apart from the rest of the world. 

The President’s attacks on those rights – calling the free press the “enemy of the people,” dubbing critical speech as “fake news” and taking what many are calling the unprecedented step of removing White House press credentials from a reporter, Jim Acosta – are an attack on our very concept of self-government and should be condemned as an un-American attempt to quash dissent.


About the Association
The mission of the New York City Bar Association, which was founded in 1870 and has 24,000 members, is to equip and mobilize the legal profession to practice with excellence, promote reform of the law, and uphold the rule of law and access to justice in support of a fair society and the public interest in our community, our nation, and throughout the world.