Big media like CNN and MSNBC shouldn’t censor Trump’s words in The White House daily briefings on Coronavirus. Instead, they need to unmask the misinformation and lay his lies bare-naked for America to see.
Highlights! Not Denounce But Dissect — CNN & MSNBC Need To Fact-Check Trump In Real-Time
- Trump misguides America every day
- But media shouldn’t leave it to Dr. Fauci to debunk Trump alone
- Real-time fact-checking Trump’s daily briefings
When President Trump stated in his yesterday’s press briefing that the next two weeks are going to be really painful, more painful was the fact that those words were probably the only ones in his address that didn’t sound like the President’s propaganda.
Donald Trump and the Coronavirus Task Force’s daily White House briefings started with major policy announcements but have now become little rallies where POTUS spreads misinformation and makes sketchy claims.
Big media like CNN and MSNBC have been late to realize this. But the step to censor the President hasn’t gone down well with critics. White House officials like spokesperson Judd Deere called CNN and MSNBC’s decision ‘pretty disgraceful’. While there’s no doubt that the President’s briefings are mostly fluff, they are adding to the dangerous situation prevailing due to the outbreak.
Trump misguides America every day
The US coronavirus casualty toll stands at more than 185,000 cases and almost 4,000 deaths. But Trump had continuously downplayed the threat before yesterday’s briefing. It should be noted that two days ago he wanted to re-open America for business by Easter. He kept undermining scientific data to paint a lesser critical picture of the pandemic in front of his audience.
Trump brings in corporate honchos to praise his government’s efforts, jokes about his hair and dismisses journalists asking tough questions with a chastising disregard. But more hurtful to the fight against the virus are his promotion of unproven drugs which has even been catastrophic for some who bought into his false claims.
Indeed, as the US leaves the world far behind in terms of the intensity of the outbreak, Trump brags about high TV ratings of his press briefings.
But media shouldn’t leave it to Dr. Fauci alone to debunk Trump
So unpredictable are the statements of President Trump that even the people by his side are taken aback. The instance when Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases quickly fact-checked Trump’s downplaying of a fall flare-up of the Coronavirus outbreak.
Daily press-briefings are quite necessary at the moment to give nervous people a sense of what’s going on and what’s in store. But Trump’s briefings are different from those by Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo who provide stats and announcements which would be important for their constituents.
So, while there have been suggestions that media houses should stop live broadcasting, censor the misinformation and only show what’s significant, there is a better way – masking off the President’s coronavirus version of The Apprentice.
Real-time fact-checking Trump’s lies
As Dan Froomkin writes for Salon.com, it’s “Time to split the screen”. Froomkin tells big news corporations to do some journalistic jujitsu. What this would entail is providing their viewers with real-time fact-checking to debunk Trump’s random claims. There needs to be the correct information on a split-screen alongside the president blurting out misinformation. He writes, “What I’m talking about is more than just fact-checking. It’s would also be reality-checking and gaslighting-fighting.”
However, for CNN & MSNBC to fact-check Trump in real-time won’t be an easy task requiring resources and a process difficult to achieve.
Furthermore, with social-media already dissecting Trump’s daily briefings, the big networks have matter ready to play with. From inaccurate progress reports, questionable medical claims, lies, media-bashing, economic cheerleading, and self-promotion, there’s a lot of material to be fiddled with. If anyone has the requisite resources, its CNN and MSNBC.