Journalists continued to acknowledge Sunday that the media’s longstanding dismissal of the Wuhan “lab-leak” theory was in part due to Republicans pitching it.
Once widely cast aside as a racist “conspiracy theory” and “fringe” nonsense, the possibility that the coronavirus accidentally leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology has gained increasing credence in recent weeks. The saga has led to yet another reckoning for mainstream media journalists about groupthink and bias in the industry. Faced with criticism that they blasted the theory last year for political reasons, some reporters have admitted its Republican origins with figures like Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., former President Donald Trump, and former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo played into why they disparaged it.
@SenTomCotton took much of the initial heat for suggesting this as a possibility back in January.
Here’s what the @nytimes had to say about his “fringe theory” that “lacks evidence” and which “scientists have dismissed.”
Apparently those concerns have been un-dismissed since. pic.twitter.com/u61hJGI7Mj
— Drew Holden (@DrewHolden360) May 18, 2021
ABC News Washington correspondent Jonathan Karl suggested on ABC’s “This Week” Sunday that figures like Trump and Pompeo were not taken seriously by members of the media, saying “now serious people are saying it needs a serious inquiry.”
“Yes, I think a lot of people have egg on their face,” Karl said. “This was an idea that was first put forward by Mike Pompeo, secretary of state, Donald Trump, and look some things may be true even if Donald Trump said them. Because Trump was saying so much else, that was just out of control, and because he was, you know, making a frankly racist appeal talking about Kung Flu, and the China virus, he said flatly this came from that lab, and it was widely dismissed … but now serious people are saying it needs a serious inquiry.”
— Brent Baker (@BrentHBaker) May 30, 2021
(Read more from “Media Admits Dismissing COVID Lab Leak Theory Because of Trump” HERE)
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