President Donald Trump has signed legislation authorizing the construction of a monument in Washington, D.C., to honor fallen journalists.
Sens. Ben Cardin, D-Md., and Rob Portman, R-Ohio, co-sponsored the bill, H.R. 3465, the Fallen Journalists Memorial Act.
“The free media, one of the pillars of our nation, is under attack figuratively and literally across America,” Cardin said in a statement. “Too many, including five innocent souls lost in the shooting at the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, gave everything they had in defense of democracy, transparency and freedom. This new memorial will honor the lives of those who died reporting the news and supporting the media on behalf of the American people. It will be a steadfast symbol of their sacrifice and the fragility of our democracy. Those who personify the First Amendment rights granted to every citizen have made our nation stronger.”
Five employees were killed in the Annapolis, Maryland, shooting on June 28, 2018, when a gunman blasted through the glass doors of the Capital Gazette’s office.
The Fallen Journalists Memorial Foundation plans to fundraise for the construction of the memorial.
“The memorial will honor the reporters, photojournalists, producers, editors and others who have died while performing their jobs as journalists. It will demonstrate to our citizens and to visitors from around the world that our country values a free press, honors the sacrifices of journalists and supports the family, friends and colleagues of the fallen,” FJM Foundation Chair David Dreier said in a statement.
“The Foundation looks forward to beginning a collaborative process that brings together the journalism community, freedom of the press advocates and other stakeholders to design, develop, construct and maintain a memorial of historical and lasting significance with private funds.”