A producer at a Sinclair Broadcast Group-owned TV station in Nebraska has resigned in protest over scripted promos warning of fake and biased news that he other local newspeople have been required to read on air.
Justin Simmons announced his resignation Wednesday on Twitter. He referred to an interview he gave to CNNMoney in which he said he had been concerned about Sinclair’s corporate mandates for the past year and a half, and that the promos were the final straw.
Simmons submitted his resignation at KHGI TV on March 26, according to CNNMoney. That was after the corporate mandate to read the promos, but after news of the mandate went viral, sparking a growing national backlash.
“This is almost forcing local news anchors to lie to their viewers,” he said in the interview.
On Monday, Sinclair released a statement defending the program and its Trumpian language, saying “The promos served no political agenda and represented nothing more than an effort to differentiate our award-winning news programming from other, less reliable sources of information.”
Others vehemently disagreed, calling the move “Orwellian” and “extremely dangerous to our democracy,” while defenders including President Donald Trump say it’s legit in the era of fake news.