6. THE COVINGTON KID
The mainstream media claimed that pro-Trump High School students surrounded and mocked a Native American man.
On January 18, 2019, there was a confrontation between a group of Catholic High School students, Nicholas Sandmann in particular, and a Native American man named Nathan Phillips near the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. A viral video was released of the incident. The video that was released appeared to show Nathan Phillips surrounded by Nicholas Sandmann, who was wearing a ‘Make, America Great Again’ hat, and his classmates. In the video, Sandmann was smirking while Phillips played the drum. The mainstream media aired the highly edited video, without investigating if there was any further context to the story. Media outlets jumped to various conclusions about the group of teens, without verifying their claims.
They allowed Phillips to explain his version of the story on the air. Phillips said that Sandmann and his classmates were making racist comments against a group of black Hebrew Israelites that were nearby. He said they were shouting “build the wall.” Phillips said that the group then targeted him. He said tried to de-escalate the situation, but it didn’t work. He was then surrounded by the high school teens, where they then started taunting and threatening him.
After the news aired the story, Sandmann was labeled a racist and a white supremacist. He and his family received death threats.
The problem was that the story was false. When the whole video was examined, none of the events that Phillips claimed took place. The High School students never said anything racist. Instead, the group of Black Hebrew Israelites was making racist comments against the High school teens, calling them “crackers” and “incest babies.”
Nathan Phillips was the one who confronted the teens. It was Phillips that was the one who was doing the taunting.
An independent investigation by the school found that the boys were innocent of all the accusations.
According to the Bishop of the Diocese of Covington, Roger Foys, “Our students were placed in a situation that was at once bizarre and even threatening, their reaction to the situation was, given the circumstances, expected and one might even say laudatory.”
This led to several outlets having to make public apologies and retract stories. Sandmann and his family sued several media outlets. He settled a lawsuit with the Washington Post and CNN for an undisclosed amount.
Here’s a compilation video of media outlets getting it wrong (video)
7. HAITIAN WHIP STORY
The mainstream media claimed that border control was whipping Haitian migrants as they attempted to cross the border.
In September 2021, an image appeared to show what looked like a border patrol agent, on horseback, carrying what looked like a whip, while pursuing a Haitian migrant.
Mainstream media outlets quickly jump to conclusions about the photo without any further investigation.
President Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, and Alejandro Mayorkas, the Secretary of Homeland Security, condemned the Border Patrol agent. Other top Democrats quickly joined in to condemn all Border Patrol agents.
But the problem is that it wasn’t a whip— it was just the horse reins. The border patrol agent never used the reins in any way other than it was intended.
To make matters even worse, on Sept 24, 2021, Alejandro Mayorkas was notified through an email, that the photographer who captured the photo said that the Border Patrol agent was not whipping the migrant in the photo.
Despite being notified, he continued to push the lie.
Not only did the mainstream media help push the lie that migrants were being whipped, but they also didn’t cover that Mayorkas, and the Biden administration, knowingly pushed the lie.
According to Fox News, “A review of Grabien transcripts by Fox News Digital found no mention of the story on CNN, MSNBC, ABC News, NBC News, or CBS News since it broke.”
8. THE LAB LEAK THEORY
In the United States, shortly after the pandemic started in January 2020, the mainstream media helped push the narrative that the pandemic started at a Wuhan fish market.
Many people from the beginning opposed this view, instead believing that the virus was leaked from the nearby lab, the Wuhan Institute of Virology. Both claims have never been 100% proven. I’m not going to try to prove or disprove either claim. Instead, I’m going to show you that the origin of the virus was unknown at the beginning; but instead of the media being objective about that fact, they decided to mislead people for political reasons.
One of the main reasons the mainstream media dismissed the lab leak theory, was because it was supported by prominent Republicans. President Donald Trump, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and Senator Tom Cotton all supported the lab leak theory.
Without any evidence, the mainstream media claimed that the lab leak theory was a far-right conspiracy theory that had been debunked. Some outlets even suggested that the lab leak theory was racist.
Washington Post and Politifact labeled the lab leak theory false, and Facebook censored any mention of it.
In February 2020, Washington Post came out with an article titled “Tom Cotton keeps repeating a coronavirus conspiracy theory that was already debunked.”
Despite the media’s best attempts, many people supported the lab leak theory.
According to a Morning Consult survey, 46% of adults in the U.S. believe COVID-19 was leaked from a lab, compared to 26% that believe the virus began naturally, and 28% that were not sure.
According to a Politico-Harvard poll, conducted in July 2021, 52% of Americans believe that the virus leaked from a lab, compared to 28% who believe COVID-19 naturally took place through the process of zoonosis. Zoonosis is when a disease is transmitted to humans from animals.
As top Democrats and more of the public began to support the lab leak theory, the media outlets, social media, and fact-checking websites shifted their positions.
Facebook said in a statement, “In light of ongoing investigations into the origin of COVID-19 and consultation with public health experts, we will no longer remove the claim that COVID-19 is man-made or manufactured from our apps.”
Angela Rasmussen, a prominent virologist, criticized the media’s sudden shift in reporting. Rasmussen said that “the media has chosen to dress up old speculation as new information and claim that it’s evidence. It’s not. It’s speculative, and all origin hypotheses remain possible.”
Not every journalist supported the left-wing media narrative. Here are some examples—
New York magazine’s Jonathan Chait said, “Story after story depicted the lab-leak hypothesis as clearly false and even racist… The outlets that fared worst were those like the Guardian, Slate, and Vox (which is owned by the same company that owns New York Media), which embraced a ‘moral clarity’ ethos of forgoing traditional journalistic norms of restraint and objectivity in favor of calling out lies and bigotry.”
New York Times reporter, David Leonhardt, said, “I think people made this mistake. I think a lot of people on the political left and a lot of people in the media made the mistake. They said, ‘wow if Tom Cotton is saying something, it can’t be true.’ Or they assumed that. And that’s not right.”
Washington Post’s Josh Rogin said, “Most MSM reporters didn’t “ignore” the lab leak theory, they actively crapped all over it for over a year while pretending to be objective out of a toxic mix of confirmation bias, source bias (their scientist sources lied to them), group think, Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS) and general incompetence.”
9. JUSSIE SMOLLETT ATTACK
Similarly, to the Nick Sandmann story, the mainstream media helped push the false narrative that, Jussie Smollett, a black homosexual actor was attacked by two white Trump supporters.
On January 29, 2019, Smollett alleged that he was attacked after picking up a sandwich in East Lower North Water Street in Chicago, IL, around 2 a.m.
He claimed that it was two white men with “Make America Great Again” hats that attacked him. They put a noose around Smollett’s neck, shouted racial slurs at him, and poured bleach on him.
From the very beginning, the Chicago police department was skeptical of Smollett’s claims.
However, the mainstream media completely bought the story without any further investigation.
According to an article by Jack Crowe for the National Review, “While TMZ and other “celebrity” outlets led the way in reporting Smollett’s claims uncritically, mainstream outlets, including CNN, Vanity Fair, the Washington Post, and others accepted Smollett’s version of events and cited it as yet another example of rising homophobia and racism in the Trump era. Several reporters and editors at outlets including the Post, the Los Angeles Times, Rolling Stone, and Reuters similarly endorsed Smollett’s version of events on their personal Twitter accounts.”
It turned out that the attack was a complete lie that was fabricated by Smollett himself. He had paid two Nigerian American brothers to pretend to attack him.
It is believed Smollett did this to gain sympathy and further his acting career.
Later, Smollett was convicted of 5 out of 6 charges of felony disorderly conduct related to faking a hate crime.
Number 71 on her list is about “other faked attacks reported by the news as if confirmed.” She compiles a list of an additional 5 fake hate crimes reported by media outlets.
10. TRUMP-CHARLOTTESVILLE SPEECH
Many mainstream media outlets claimed Trump called neo-Nazis “very fine people.”
This isn’t true. During a protest in Charlottesville, Virginia, Trump condemned neo-Nazis in his speech. He did not refer to the neo-Nazis as “very fine people”.
Here’s part of the speech in question: “Excuse me, they didn’t put themselves down as neo-Nazis, and you had some very bad people in that group. But you also had people that were very fine people on both sides. You had people in that group – excuse me, excuse me, I saw the same pictures you did. You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down of, to them, a very, very important statue and the renaming of a park from Robert E. Lee to another name… I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and white nationalists because they should be condemned totally.”
(48 Hours Later) Trump said, “Racism is evil, and those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”
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