Why one Jewish paper is choosing not to cover Trump for an entire day

June 20, 2016

The Huffington Post relegated Donald Trump to its entertainment section. Now a newspaper that covers the Jewish community offers him a more vexing notion: silence.

The Forward, a paper on Jewish culture in America founded in 1897 as a Yiddish-language daily, won’t mention him at all for 24 hours starting at 5 a.m. Tuesday.

It is, obviously, a symbolic act with no impact on a man who, it seems, can get instant live coverage on any news network as he sits prone in bed with his cellphone. Just dial a control room and, bingo, an “exclusive” interview ensues.

The Forward, which still prints a monthly Yiddish print edition, aims not to even mention any story that even mentions Trump. “Whereas usually it’s best for a journalist to just grow a thick skin, a supple spine and the ability to ignore the crazies, what we’re witnessing in the age of Donald Trump calls for a bolder response,” wrote editor-in-chief Jane Eisner in the publication as she explained the decision.

It desires to make a point about the need to deal with “the rising threat level against journalists who are Jewish or who are perceived to be — the haters sometimes don’t bother to distinguish — and who are being bullied, harassed and endangered by the surge of anti-Semitism on social media,” she wrote.

Second is what it deems to be media “complicity in the rise of Trump.” So it won’t mention him.

In an afternoon exchange, I wondered: Why not longer than a day?

“We are committed to this moratorium for only a day because we do take seriously our responsibility to cover the presidential campaign from a Jewish perspective, and that means writing about Donald Trump, and the other candidates.”

“The moratorium was meant to be a statement of values and a call to action, not a boycott.”

Well, during the moratorium, Forward readers might just have a bit more time check out “10 Meme Accounts That Own the #Jewish Game on Instagram,” “Remembering Nora Ephron” and “Harvey Weinstein Leads Parade of Jewish Fundraisers for Hillary Clinton,” among other tales.

After all, even the media, which helped propel Trump’s rise, can sometime grow fatigued with him.

Correction: A previous version of this story, relying on information from a spokesperson from The Forward, said the newspaper published a combination English-language Yiddish edition.