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There has been an oft-repeated claim that President Trump has been hounded by the press from day one. That’s a subjective statement I don’t think is worth disagreeing with. But let’s recognize it an apologetic attempt to explain why so many don’t see the glory of his reign. Let’s examine it from another angle.

Every president gets attacked more than the last thanks to more and more media channels and coverage. A lot of it is technology. And Trump opened himself up by communicating directly every day without a filter. Heck, social media didn’t even exist much before Obama, even though he was hounded over such heinous scandals as a latte salute and a tan suit.

But repeating propaganda about him being unfairly attacked by the press like he’s the victim needs to stop. He had called anything and everything fake news if it contradicted things he literally made up off the top of his head. Even FOX and other legitimate right-leaning news outlets were considered “traitors” to him just because they couldn’t in clear conscience outright lie to make all of his messes smell good.

Only the most extreme, biased, and non-credible networks like OANN and NewsMax became acceptable to his followers — and they outright say they will do anything to support him, which is the opposite of journalistic integrity. It created a bubble, and Trump successfully made all other media to be the bad guy. In turn, journalists had little incentive to be nice about him unless they were eager to kiss below the belt already.

And these select outlets are the actual source of many of Trump’s more outlandish assertions. He only listens to sources that consistently favor him and repeat his own claims, like a closed feedback loop. OANN in particular has actually influenced policy with false facts because they have his ear over his own advisors and experts. That’s scary and has consequences.

Never has any president outright attacked journalism as a whole, as it is an absolutely necessary safeguard for a free society no matter how imperfect it is. Instead, he encouraged the conspiratorial view of the MSM to take over, which though not entirely unjustified, had posed a huge danger that culminates in things as we saw a few days ago. We have millions of people who are utterly unreachable with facts and live in an alternate reality.

Even is someone remains a fan and is undeterred by recent events, I would hope they can at least elevate their debate and admit there’s been a lot more going on than the simple narrative that the press was relentlessly mean to him.