With her absence at the White House press briefings as of late, the veteran reporter wasn’t there when President Donald Trump lashed out at Yamiche Alcindor of the “PBS NewsHour” on Sunday. Instead, Ryan revealed to Journal-isms that she has been supporting her colleague behind the scenes in personal conversations.
“My support is being there for her,” Ryan said by telephone. “This is a unique club,” she said of the other White House correspondents with whom she regularly communicates, such as Abby Phillip and Jim Acosta, both of CNN, and Brian Karem of Playboy, the report states.
“I am one of those who have chosen to stay home. I have a colleague who says she has it. I am one of those who has pre-existing conditions. There are a lot of familiar faces that are not going to the White House. Why am I going to go into the line of fire?”
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Alcindor is 33, and considered less susceptible to the virus. “I am taking all the recommended precautions to continue doing this work as carefully as possible,” she told Journal-isms.
In related news, the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) and the Journalism & Women Symposium (JAWS) criticized Trump in a statement issued Tuesday for his “demeaning” treatment of Alcindor.
Trump berated Alcindor during Sunday’s daily White House coronavirus briefing after she pressed him about the status of the medical ventilators that have been requested amid the COVID-19 crisis.
Trump replied, “Why don’t you people — why don’t you act in a little more positive.”
He then launched a personal attack. “That’s why you used to work for the [New York] Times and now you work for somebody else,” he said. “Be nice. Don’t be threatening. Be nice.”
NABJ and JAWS noted in a joint statement that it is not a journalist’s job to be “nice.”