This article was first published by American Thinker.
The mainstream media’s double-standard when it comes to accuracy is undeniable to anyone with a shred of integrity. For stories that favor the Left or damage the Right, the bar couldn’t be lower. For stories that are vice-versa, however, the media’s scrutiny has no end. We’ve seen the phenomenon ad nauseam for years now, but its frequency and impact has reached a critical level. We saw it with Christine Blasey Ford and her blistering, uncorroborated accusations against Justice Brett Kavanaugh that were willingly regurgitated by Democrats and their media. We see it currently with the unfolding scandal involving Hunter Biden, as the media scoffs at its legitimacy in spite of the validated authenticity of the emails that kick-started the whole hubbub. There is arguably no story, however, where the media’s duplicity is more evident and more detrimental than what we’ve seen regarding their reporting on COVID-19.
Reporting on the political aspects of COVID-19 has been one-sided since the very beginning of the pandemic. Regardless of the mainstream news outlet, New York’s Democrat Governor Andrew Cuomo has been covered as having done a splendid job managing his state through the pandemic, whereas Florida’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis has been depicted as having screwed the pooch. Forget the fact that New York’s COVID-19 deaths-per-million (which is undoubtedly the most equitable statistic in evaluating the virus’ deadliness) of over 1,725 per million is more than double that of Florida. Facts be damned for our media, they need to cover-up for Democrats’ incompetence, even if it means endangering American lives.
After months of leading Democrats stoking fears about the safety of a potential COVID-19 vaccine, an indisputably political approach, USA Today recently reported that only 58% of Americans plan to get the vaccination once it’s available. In one breath, Democrats tell us that the virus is so fearsome that we must destroy our economy and forsake our basic rights, and in the next they instill terror about receiving an inoculation to thwart it. The Democrats’ actions have been downright reckless, but our mainstream media insists on covering up their efforts and playing along.
Likely driven by the much-publicized interactions between President Trump and interviewer Leslie Stahl leading up to its airing, over 17 million viewers tuned in to watch 60 Minutes last Sunday (10/25). While the president’s defiant dialogue with Stahl was obviously the top story, the second half of the program featured Joe Biden being interviewed by Norah O’Donnell, and COVID-19 was predictably one of the key topics they discussed.
O’Donnell asked Biden about Dr. Scott Atlas, the president’s top advisor on COVID-19, and Atlas’ recommendation for “young people to go about their business and older people to sequester.” Biden began shaking his head to the camera as O’Donnell asked the question, and replied, “Nobody thinks he makes any sense, nobody. No serious doctor around the world.” O’Donnell didn’t bother to challenge Biden’s response, and instead followed up by asking, “But how do you not lock down the economy?” Biden’s response was blatantly inaccurate. It was a deliberate lie, and the lack of a follow-up by O’Donnell shows that she wasn’t just guilty of poor journalism, she was complicit in the falsehood.
On October 5th, The Great Barrington Declaration (GBD) was released to the public, almost three full weeks before Biden’s interview. For those who’ve never heard of the GBD, you shouldn’t feel left out. Our mainstream media has barely covered its existence, and are in fact doing everything they can to ignore it. Written by three renowned infectious disease epidemiologists — one each from Harvard, Stanford and Oxford — the GBD makes several recommendations that sound suspiciously similar to what Dr. Atlas has advocated for, and what President Trump has pitched to the American public. Among other things, the document advises:
- “Those who are not vulnerable should immediately be allowed to resume life as normal.”
- “Restaurants and other businesses should open.”
- “Schools and universities should be open for in-person teaching.”
The GBD advises that communities and countries strive for herd immunity. The very mention of herd immunity has become verboten in many circles, with opponents such as Dr. Anthony Fauci of the CDC suggesting such an approach will kill people. But the credibility of the GBD is not simply limited to the credentials of its three authors, though their résumés are thoroughly impressive. To date, there have been over 11,000 medical and public health scientists from around the world that have also signed the declaration, along with another 32,000 medical practitioners. But Joe Biden told 17 million Americans that “no serious doctor around the world” agrees with Dr. Atlas? And Norah O’Donnell just went right along with the lie? As Joe might say, “C’mon man.”
For Joe Biden to dismiss almost 44,000 scientists and medical practitioners as “nobody,” and for a journalist as prominent as Norah O’Donnell to simply accept Biden’s dismissal as legitimate, is beyond irresponsible. Americans, and indeed people throughout the world, need to understand the science of this awful pandemic. The Left and their media are constantly demanding such an approach, shouting “follow the science” at every opportunity. But they only want us to listen to the scientists they like, who just happen to be the ones that disagree with President Trump and Dr. Atlas.
In addition to the recommendations in the GBD, the document also points out the perils of ignoring them. While the most obvious negative effects of lockdowns are the destruction of our economy and the subsequent mental health impacts, the GBD calls out the damage they cause to the actual physical health of those affected by lockdowns. If lockdowns continue, the document predicts that “irreparable damage” will be sustained, with the underprivileged being disproportionately affected. The GBD points to the devastation being inflicted in both the long-term and short-term, with “lower childhood vaccination rates, worsening cardiovascular disease outcomes, [and] fewer cancer screenings.”
The GBD denounces the politicization of COVID-19, and counsels a common sense approach moving forward. Protect the elderly and vulnerable, but younger and less-vulnerable folks should go back to normal. Open up restaurants and schools, but if you have symptoms, stay home. The less-vulnerable should go back to work, but be smart about it. It may be months, or years, before we know who got it right: the scientists and doctors who signed the GBD, or Dr. Fauci and his supporters. But if we are going to consider further destroying our country again with possible extended lockdowns, shouldn’t we at least have an honest discussion and consider various points of view from all legitimate scientists?
The Left and their media can’t afford to have President Trump’s positions legitimized. If someone comes out and backs Trump’s COVID-19 plans, the media have to cover it up. They have to discredit them, even if that means winking and nodding to Joe Biden’s absurd claim that 44,000 scientists/doctors are “nobody.” If it appears likely that a vaccination will be available to potentially save thousands of lives, Democrats must try to instill fear of its safety lest President Trump is blessed with good news, and the media must cover that up as well. They must do everything they can to ensure Trump loses next Tuesday, up to and including persisting with the outrageous cover-up campaign they’ve been engaging in for months; regardless of what harm they might cause.