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Trump Derangement Syndrome shows no signs of slowing down. This is evidenced by a new Global News story attempting to “fact check” the American president.
The article by Josh K. Elliott, entitled “‘I haven’t touched my face in weeks’: Trump can’t stop—and neither can you,” has been shared widely. It attempts to debunk a lighthearted joke Trump made at a coronavirus briefing.
“I haven’t touched my face in weeks,” Trump said during a COVID-19 briefing at the White House. “[It’s] been weeks! I miss it!”
Elliott’s fact check of Trump’s mild joke is laughable: “Photos show that’s false. He’s touched his face many times over the last week, including at a meeting with pharmaceutical execs on Monday, where he struck a thoughtful pose for the cameras.”
More egregious than the attempted fact check of an obvious joke, however, is the fact that Global actually spread serious disinformation in the very same article.
“Trump has repeatedly tried to paint the coronavirus in classically Trumpian terms, calling it a “hoax” and a plot by the ‘Fake News Media’ and the ‘Dems’ to sink the stock market and his presidency.” Elliott writes.
There’s only one problem with that: Trump never called the coronavirus a “hoax.” As a matter of fact, Politico already got dinged for false information by Facebook for spreading that lie.
The establishment media is so desperate to catch Trump in a bad moment that they are willing to manufacture fictional ones. Just look at this selectively edited YouTube clip used to help propagate the “new hoax” lie:
What President Trump actually said: “One of my people came up to me and said, ‘Mr. President, they tried to beat you on Russia. That didn’t work out too well. They couldn’t do it. They tried the impeachment hoax. That was on a perfect conversation. They tried anything. They tried it over and over. They’ve been doing it since you got in. It’s all turning. They lost, it’s all turning. Think of it, and this is their new hoax.’”
The transcript makes it clear. Trump did not call the coronavirus a hoax; he called the Democrats’ attempts to politicize the pandemic and lay blame for it a hoax.
While we understand that the article was written in a lighthearted tone, the spread of false information is not something that should be taken lightly—no matter the tone. It’s arguable, even, that fake news with a smiley face on it is more dangerous because of how benign it is.
Fake news is fake news, and Global News deserves to be called out on it.