Thursday, June 25, 2020

"NBC Nightly News" -- Making a Point I Don't Think It Realizes It Is Making

It is rare that I watch the national network newscasts because I can usually anticipate what they are going to cover, and how they are going to frame it, before they air.

Tonight is a perfect example. They ran a story with a lightly mocking tone toward those who are
not wearing masks.

Yet, take a look at this photo from later in the newscast. Savannah Guthrie, inside, in a studio with other people, is not wearing a mask. Yet, the reporter -- at night in the unconstrained outdoors with no one else visible in the scene -- is wearing a mask.
Whether NBC intends it or not, this conveys the message that masks are a political symbol, at least for some.

My advice is unchanged: Indoors and in a constrained outdoor situation? Wear a mask! At Yosemite or at the beach? You don't need it.

NBC also reported, at length, on the surge in cases in Houston and elsewhere and discussed it with various medical experts. Fine. But, what didn't they report? Deaths. Here's the likely reason why. Deaths, thank God, are way down. That doesn't fit the narrative. Below is the New York Times' graph as of this evening.
What might the explanation be? It may be more testing which is detecting asymptomatic cases or that the virus has become less lethal -- as some health experts predicted -- in the summer heat. But, reporting the surge in cases, in urgent tones, is misleading at best.

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