By Gu Chen Source:Global Times
Hundreds of activists gather outside Fox News HQ on March 13, 2019 to protest against Fox News host Tucker Carlson over his controversial comments against women. Photo: VCG
This week, Fox News, one of Donald Trump’s favorite mouthpieces, ran a story on the conspiracy theory that claims COVID-19 was made at a laboratory in Wuhan, China.
The most shocking aspect of this theory was not how it claimed to know where the virus originated. Such misinformation has since become old news after it was dispelled by Chinese scientists and international institutions as early as February.
What’s shocking is how Fox News claimed that “multiple sources” said the virus was leaked in an attempt by China to “demonstrate that its efforts to identify and combat viruses are equal to or greater than the capabilities of the United States.”
Reading the report was an unbelievable experience, and not because the Fox News claim rocked my understanding of China, but how it was unfathomable that a major news outlet would make such a ridiculous claim and even take it seriously.
Did anyone at Fox News bother to read the report? China leaked the virus because it wanted to prove its system was better than the US? It sounded like something a third-grader would say.
Even though Fox News may think that all Americans are as ignorant as Trump’s consultant Kellyanne Conway, who claimed the virus was the 19th version of COVID, the report is beyond ridiculous and will inspire others to wonder if there is anyone at the news outlet whose brain actually works.
Unfortunately, Fox News has an extensive fan base who wants to be coerced into believing the “China leaked virus” theory. On Twitter, some threatened to “wipe” China off the planet and posted a gif of a nuclear bomb, suggesting that China should be nuked. Such fascist behavior should come as no surprise given that Fox News and Trump’s behavior often invite racist and neo-Nazis words.
Objective and intellectual thinkers do not accept Fox News claims regarding China. On the Fox News YouTube channel, many questioned their “sources,” which is something Fox News refuses to address.
What’s even funnier is how Trump said in 2016 that “don’t believe ‘sources said’ by the VERY dishonest media. If they don’t name the sources, the sources don’t exist.”
Regardless of “sources,” the Fox News theory proves a concern I’ve had since February. Trump and his conservative allies began making remarks that COVID-19 was “just a flu” and one that would “magically disappear” due to “hot weather.” Trish Regan of Fox News said the epidemic was a “scam” by Democrats to impeach Trump. Their attitudes inspired me to wonder if the coronavirus emerged in the US first, would these people treat it just like a flu, downplay its risks and even cover up the truth of this deadly pandemic?
China reported, studied, and fought the virus first, treated it as a very serious crisis, and became a whistleblower for the pandemic worldwide. China’s efforts might have foiled Trump and his henchman’s plan to downplay COVID-19. So, when the outbreak in the US worsened and couldn’t be covered up because of information from China, Trump and his men would dislike China for revealing the true nature of COVID-19, which would also jeopardize his approval rating.
And now, in Fox News’ latest false claim, one can certainly sense such a grudge against China. It is apparently a form of revenge by Trump’s team as they are shamed by China.
In other words, the Fox News’ conspiracy theory may have revealed how they never took COVID-19 seriously. For them and Trump, it is ultimately a political reality show for Trump’s re-election so that instead of being responsible, their priorities are always to find someone to blame, be it Democrats, news media, China, or the World Health Organization.
For those who need further evidence that Trump and his puppy Fox News only care about political gain, check the internet and social media and see who is spreading misinformation and who is pretending that this is just a flu.
There is a saying on China’s social media: Like idols, like fans.
The author is a freelance writer based in Beijing. [email protected]