The Fourth of July is a day of commemorating America’s fight for liberty and CNN decided to mark the holiday by celebrating, very specifically, freedom of the press.
The network tweeted on Tuesday quotes by some of the most influential people in U.S. history, including Benjamin Franklin, Eleanor Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and Abraham Lincoln.
“Celebrate America and its freedoms this #IndependenceDay,” the network wrote in its first tweet.
Of all the quotes CNN shared, more than half concerned the First Amendment, which includes the guarantee of freedom of the press.
Considering President Donald Trump’s crusade to discredit various media outlets he deems as offering “fake news,” CNN’s decision to single out iconic figures’ thoughts on the freedom of press would seem to be no coincidence.
This weekend, Trump specifically targeted CNN during yet another Twitter tirade. On Saturday, he pinned a tweet to his timeline which suggested that CNN should be renamed “fraud news,” then called his use of social media “MODERN DAY PRESIDENTIAL.” Later that evening, Trump railed against the media in a speech he gave in Washington to honor military veterans during a religiously themed Fourth of July event.
On Sunday, Trump doubled down on his attacks and appeared to endorse violence against journalists by tweeting an edited video that showed him violently beating the CNN logo during a WWE match.
CNN responded to Trump’s weekend Twitter rants by noting White House deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders’ quote from last Thursday: “The president in no way form or fashion has ever promoted or encouraged violence. If anything, quite the contrary.”
Trump’s crusade against the media notwithstanding, CNN sent the country a reminder that U.S. leaders before him honored the First Amendment and touted the press’ right to hold the government accountable.
View CNN’s historical words of wisdom below.