Trump is a middle American radical
Trump sees many institutions as fortresses lately captured by radical progressives that must be attacked and besieged if they are to be recaptured and liberated. Cannon deals with three such politicized institutions: the media, the NFL and the courts.
Trump does not attack freedom of the press but rather the moral authority and legitimacy of co-opted media institutions. It is what CNN has become, not what CNN was, that Trump disrespects.
These people are political enemies posturing as journalists who create "fake news" to destroy me, says Trump. Enraged media, responding, reveal themselves to be not far removed from what Trump says they are.
And, since Trump, media credibility has plummeted.
Before 2016, the NFL was an untouchable. When the league demanded that North Carolina accept the radical transgender agenda or face NFL sanctions, the Tar Heel State capitulated. When Arizona declined to make Martin Luther King's birthday a holiday in 1990, the NFL took away the Super Bowl. The Sun State caved.
This year, the league demanded respect for the beliefs and behavior of NFL players insulting Old Glory by "taking a knee" during the national anthem.
Many conservative politicians and commentators, fearing the NFL's almost mythic popularity in Middle America, remained mute.
But believing instinctively America would side with him, Trump delivered a full-throated defense of the flag and called for kicking the kneelers off the field, out of the game, and off the team.
"Fire them!" Trump bellowed.
And Trump triumphed. The NFL lost fans and viewers. The players ended the protests. No one took a knee at the Super Bowl.