Amplifying the coronavirus protests

As the coronavirus quarantine stretches into its second month, some people are pushing the boundaries of the lockdown restrictions. Many of them are just going for a drive or trying to play Frisbee in a park. But in a number of cases, groups of protesters have gathered at town halls and other government buildings, or stopped traffic on the streets of cities across the US, holding up signs questioning the need for a continued quarantine with slogans like land of the free! and fake crisis! Are these genuine protests, organized by concerned citizens with strong opinions about the lengths to which the quarantine effort has gone, or is there more going on here? If it’s the latter, then shouldn’t the press think long and hard before playing into the hands of the organizers of those protests by giving them free publicity? According to a number of media reports, anti-lockdown rallies have been seen in a number of states over the past week, including Colorado, Pennsylvania, Texas, Wisconsin, Ohio, California, and Minnesota. President Trump even appeared to encourage protesters to take to the streets in a series of tweets, advising residents to “LIBERATE VIRGINIA!” and “LIBERATE MICHIGAN!” Not surprisingly, Fox News has given these rallies a lot of airtime, complete with maps that make it look as though a grassroots movement has taken over and is growing larger by the day—something the network also did during the early days of the Tea Party in 2009. Fox has even used the term that... Continue reading at 'Columbia Journalism Review'

[ Columbia Journalism Review | 2020-04-22 11:50:46 UTC ]
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