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CNN Busted for Deceptive Article Suggesting France School Openings Caused COVID Outbreaks, Deaths

CNN Busted for Deceptive Article Suggesting France School Openings Caused COVID Outbreaks, Deaths

“Despicable headline. Journalistic malpractice. Intent to deceive to drive a false narrative. The media has so much to do with what is wrong with our country.”

Since the start of the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic here in the U.S., the mainstream media has faced accusations that they have overwhelmingly focused on negative stories about the outbreak instead of balancing them out with positive reports about recoveries, medical and scientific breakthroughs, etc.

One major analysis done on media coverage from American sources versus international sources lent credence to the accusation, as Fort Worth Star-Telegram editorial board member Cynthia Allen pointed out back in March:

In a recently published working paper, Dartmouth College economics professor Bruce Sacerdote and two fellow researchers, Ranjan Sehgal and Molly Cook, analyzed media coverage during the pandemic. They found that national U.S. publications and networks produced dramatically more negative coverage than international, regional and scientific news sources.

The researchers built a database of news coverage, categorizing by topic more than 9.4 million published stories, and used a social-science technique that classifies language as positive, negative or neutral.

They determined that 87 percent of U.S. media coverage could be classified as negative, compared to 64 percent of news reported in scientific journals and just over half of coverage in international and regional/local media outlets.

Among the top 15 media outlets in the U.S. (by readership/viewership), COVID-19 stories were 25 percentage points more likely to be negative than more general U.S. sources or major media outlets outside the U.S.

Also interesting were the researchers’ findings on school reopenings as it related to negative media coverage, though some of them were inconclusive:

Sacerdote and his colleagues considered the impact of negativity in reporting on school re-openings, too. While they found that counties that rely less on national media sources were more likely to have reopened schools, the researchers were not able to conclude that negative national stories caused fewer schools to reopen.

Sadly, what some have characterized as “panic/fear porn” in the American media on the coronavirus is still taking place to this day, especially as it relates to school reopenings. Case in point, a CNN “report” from Tuesday on a high school in France. The headline reads, “France kept classrooms open ‘at all costs.’ At a school where 20 pupils lost loved ones, some say the price was too high”:

From reading the headline alone, one would think that a coronavirus outbreak at the school caused the deaths of 20 family members.

Except buried in the article was information that contradicted the false narrative the headline tried to craft (bolded emphasis added):

Grace was full of hope as she entered the final stretch of high school. The 16-year-old was two years away from graduating, and she wanted to make her parents proud — especially her father.

“I told him I loved him, and I would always do my best,” Grace said.

This would be the last promise she ever made to her father, as he lay intubated in an ICU unit for Covid-19 patients. He died the next day, on April 9 of last year, at the peak of the first wave in France.


In all, at least 20 students from her high school, Eugene Delacroix, in nearby Drancy, lost a relative to the virus in 2020, according to the town hall.

Nothing suggests these deaths were caused by infections at the school. But CNN has spoken with students at Eugene Delacroix who say they share a common burden: The fear of bringing Covid-19 home and infecting a loved one.

Wait. What?

A Twitter user named Eric, who has “health care software architect, biomedical engineering” in his bio, was among the first to notice the discrepancy between the CNN headline and the article and pointed it out:

Others on the social media platform responded accordingly:

Others suggested CNN ripped a page out of the American Federation of Teachers (teachers’ union) playbook:

In my opinion, either CNN should pull the entire article or make major changes to the headline to not give off the impression that the school openings led to those 20 deaths. But of course, they won’t because CNN has been among the worst offenders in the media when selling fear and creating panic during the pandemic. Plus, CNN is a serial offender for fake news, so why would they bother changing their formula now?

It’s just inexcusable and disgusting. As suggested in one reaction, this is a classic example of pseudo-journalism that “has so much to do with what is wrong with our country.”

— Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym “Sister Toldjah” and can be reached via Twitter. —


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Enemy of the people

If you read it carefully it doesn’t say the “cost” of keeping the school open was killing Grandma, it says the “cost” is that the kids are afraid they’ve killed Grandma, and/or that they might kill Grandpa too. They’ve been told that even though they’re in almost no danger from the virus themselves, they could pick it up at school and transmit it to Grandma at home. Which at one point seemed like a reasonable concern, but we now know that there’s no evidence that asymptomatic transmission is a real thing that we should worry about.

    puhiawa in reply to Milhouse. | May 6, 2021 at 12:27 pm

    And Grandma has been given a chance to get inoculated in all 50 states now according to the CDC.

      iowan2 in reply to puhiawa. | May 7, 2021 at 8:46 am

      but we now know that there’s no evidence that asymptomatic transmission is a real thing that we should worry about.

      Then why is the CDC forcing summer camp kids be masked at all times?

      The CDC is ONLY measuring herd immunity by the number of the population vaccinated. Ignoring millions of infected, recovered people. Why is that? I mean, Why is the CDC ignoring the science?

    kyrrat in reply to Milhouse. | May 6, 2021 at 1:49 pm

    Milhouse the point is that few readers get past the headline, and fewer read carefully. The information in the headline, which is at best misleading, is the sum of the information they gained from the article.

    henrybowman in reply to Milhouse. | May 6, 2021 at 7:03 pm

    If you read it carefully you’re wasting time that would be better spent finding a news source that prints the truth plainly, instead of hiding it in articles obscured with DaVinci codes. The basic purpose of media is to inform, not to print articles purposely designed to mislead when read from 20,000 feet.

MattMusson | May 6, 2021 at 9:46 am

I just shake my head when I think of all the years the Media was lying to us, and we were not equipped and organized enough to realize it.

    bw222 in reply to MattMusson. | May 6, 2021 at 1:59 pm

    There are many who are still dumb enough to believe the media.

      henrybowman in reply to bw222. | May 6, 2021 at 6:49 pm

      I remember an article I read a couple years ago about how the Internet was fracturing our society. One of the themes was that the local newspaper (most failed now) gave America a greater sense of unity and purpose. The illustration was a train or subway car in which dozens of near-identical men in near-identical gray-flannel suits were all holding identical broadsheet newspapers in front of them. Honest to Murgatroyd, it was like Apple’s “1984” ad… and it was being celebrated.

I think it’s safe to say that if you’re self-proclaiming that you only report “Facts”, you’re not.

One of the local channels here proclaims “Facts, Not Fear” on its broadcasts and for the last 14 months has been filling quite a bit of airtime with CD-19 fear-mongering. It’s often been like there is nothing else going on in the Metro DC area that’s newsworthy.

This is all about the left’s cultish desire to keep the schools closed yet the teachers paid, many of which now devote merely an hour to video instruction.

    bw222 in reply to puhiawa. | May 6, 2021 at 2:01 pm

    Good teachers were anxious to get back in the classroom. My daughter, who teaches third grade told me her students were only learning about 30% as much through Zoom or Google Classroom than through in-person instruction.

      henrybowman in reply to bw222. | May 6, 2021 at 6:58 pm

      My grandson (9) was enrolled in his old “city” school that went entirely online, while he was quarantining at our rural ranch. He was thrashing, floundering, and goofing off without the face-to-face attention. Ultimately, we enrolled him in the local school, which was still running conventionally. Difference was like day and night, especially having some new friends locally. The tiny class size didn’t hurt either (20 in the entire grade, the largest in the school). And the COVID risk out here is dead minimal.
      I seriously don’t know why anybody who has a choice would live in a city. I’d trade my family’s welfare over Hamilton tickets any day of the week.

Just think of them as the Crazy Nonsense Network and it all makes sense

Yet Jake Tapper claims that GOP leaders lie. There was a time – before he joined CNN – when some conservatives said, “Jake Tapper is a liberal, but an honest one.” No one has said that in 10 years.

CNN’s own producer admitted CNN is often propaganda, has stacked panels with predetermined outcomes and its #1 focus was removing Trump from office in 2020.

    henrybowman in reply to bw222. | May 6, 2021 at 6:59 pm

    Jake Tapper began his career as a paid liar for Handgun Control, Inc. He’s never been an honest liberal.

“CNN is very fake news”

You have to read the news for all the missing facts. This is a great example of correlation vs causation. Think the Matt Gaetz story. Exactly who is making allegations? I can’t find a first person in this “reporting.
The Miracopa County recount, and the intervention by the DoJ?
Exactly what triggered the DoJ response? I cant find a single quote of a first person making an accusation.

A staggering percentage of “news reporting” is devoid of any facts to support the story….and it usually is just a story.