"Misinformation" became the biggest threat to our democracy a few news cycles ago.
It’s impossible to take the claim seriously for a half-dozen reasons, including how some of the people pushing it to luxuriate in Fake News. Yes on Russian collusion, no on Hunter Biden’s laptop being Hunter Biden’s laptop, for example.
Still, no one likes misinformation in its purest form, wrongful data that clouds citizens from seeing the truth.
In that spirit, let’s cut to a vital misinformation spigot, one which never gets name-checked in these conversations.
Meet “The View.”
The long-running talk show, featuring Oscar-winner Whoopi Goldberg as its de facto queen, spends an inordinate amount of time making viewers dumber.
It’s not just their ill-informed arguments or stale talking points that punish viewers. Neither is rare in today’s pop culture nor is it problematic to throw lukewarm "takes" into the cultural debate.
No, it’s the show’s eagerness to misinform — without a fact check-in site — that grinds the teeth of fair-minded souls.
Some misinformation morsels are almost comic in their ineptitude. In 2009, Goldberg famously weighed in on disgraced director Roman Polanski, who raped a 13-year-old girl in 1977 after plying her with drugs. Goldberg recalled the horrific incident, explaining it wasn’t “rape-rape.”
Things have gotten worse since then.
In 2018, Goldberg suggested Sen. John McCain wanted to bring slavery back to the United States without a scintilla of proof to back up that claim.
More recently, Goldberg charged that Republicans want to take voting rights away from black Americans, again, with no facts to back up her conspiratorial charge. In fact, a state where some liberals make that dubious assertion, Georgia, just had a massive uptick in voting despite the GOP's suppression machine.
Goldberg wasn't done, though. She said schools can no longer teach the horrors of slavery, another made-up nugget from her fever dreams. Her co-hosts nodded in agreement, with one suggesting the measures Goldberg stated were being “coordinated.”
And nary a fact check in sight, again.
In March, “The View” co-host Sunny Hostin said the Republican Party had moved farther to the Right, whereas Democrats are hewing closer to the center in recent years. To do so, she mangled a Pew Research poll to do her bidding.
That claim is so aggressively incorrect it doesn’t require any fact check. Just ask the average Democrat if they’re cool with aborting a baby up to the moment of birth and wait for the answer. Or quiz the same liberal on Elon Musk's bid to bring freer speech back to Twitter.
Just days ago, Hostin said all GOP voters were the biggest domestic threat to the U.S.
The show’s pandemic fear-mongering shared even more fake news, especially for parents worried that their children could end up part of the COVID-19 death count.
In February, Hostin said 1% of children die from the virus.
"You see, I don't want to take the chance with my kid. I don't want my kid to be part of the one percent that is intubated and dies because I don't give her a vaccine.”
The actual number, according to the CDC, is .008%.
Hostin also grossly mischaracterized Fox News star Sean Hannity’s stance on the COVID-19 vaccines, despite evidence that Hannity wasn’t an anti-vaxxer.
Some of Hostin's commentary is just cruel. She once compared a racist who went out of his way to kill black people with concerned parents alarmed at what their local school boards are permitting in the classroom.
“Because getting back to what happened in Buffalo, you've got an 18-year-old kid who drives 200 miles to kill black people with a single vision to kill black people. And now we have parents storming school boards and saying, 'We don't want to talk about race relations, we don’t want to talk about anti-racism.'”
Some of the show’s lies are so nefarious, that the hosts fact-check themselves mid-episode to avoid legal woes. Hostin claimed Ginni Thomas, wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, was an active participant in the Jan. 6 Capitol riots, for example.
Minutes later, ABC brass forced Hostin to read a statement clarifying the matter.
Lies. Obfuscation. Outrageously ill-informed banter. This is just a Whitman’s Sampler of “The View” at its worst.
Now, let’s sic those misinformation agents on the show … stat.