Time Magazine named on Tuesday as its Person of the Year four journalists who were either murdered or jailed for their critical coverage, as well as the staff of the Capital Gazette of Annapolis, Maryland, five of whom were killed when a gunman attacked their newsroom.
The magazine revealed its choice, which it called “The Guardians and the War on Truth,” on NBC’s Today show.
In addition to the Capital Gazette staff, the four journalists recognized were Jamal Khashoggi, the Washington Post columnist murdered for his criticism of the Saudi crown prince; Maria Ressa, the editor of a Philippine news website which has critical coverage of its president’s controversially violent policies; and Reuters journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, who were arrested in Myanmar while probing a massacre of Rohingya Muslims.
Time editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal wrote about the choice that the honorees “are representative of a broader fight by countless others around the world – as of December 10, at least 52 journalists have been murdered in 2018 – who risk all to tell the story of our time.”
The magazine also noted this is the first time a Person of the Year is someone who is dead.
Time named President Donald Trump as runner up, citing “a crowning irony” to his influence by saying that Trump’s “ultimate impact may be determined as much by the resistance he engenders as by the goals he pursues.”
Time noted: “This year brought forth the consequences of Trump’s disruption. The deficit soared. The stock market trembled. The voters revolted. Special counsel Robert Mueller circled closer. Trump has tested the system and exposed its weaknesses, but also revealed its strength.”
The third runner-up was Mueller.