Shepard Smith uses a post-Fox spotlight to defend freedom of the press

In his first public remarks since abruptly resigning from Fox News last month, the anchor Shepard Smith called on Thursday for a steadfast defense of independent journalism, while offering a few subtle barbs at President Trump’s treatment of the press.

“Intimidation and vilification of the press is now a global phenomenon. We don’t have to look far for evidence of that,” Mr. Smith said at the annual dinner of the Committee to Protect Journalists, an appearance he signed up for before he left Fox News, his television home of 23 years…

“Our belief a decade ago that the online revolution would liberate us now seems a bit premature, doesn’t it?” Mr. Smith said in his customary Mississippi lilt. “Autocrats have learned how to use those same online tools to shore up their power. They flood the world of information with garbage and lies, masquerading as news. There’s a phrase for that.”