Italy has been ravaged by the coronavirus, and New York City is the “epicenter” in the U.S., but CBS News claims it somehow mixed up the two.
CBS News was caught over the weekend including video footage from an overrun Italian hospital and claiming it was from New York City, only to call airing the footage (pictured at left) a “mistake" without any more explanation.
British news outlet Sky News originally shot the footage in mid-March, in a story about the virus in Northern Italy, and CBS News used it in a terrifying segment about New York City’s overwhelmed hospitals.
Talk Host Jeff Crank says the “mistake” answer is not good enough considering the circumstances.
“They'll argue that it's just an editing error, and they were just using stock footage or whatever, but at a time like this it's important to be accurate,” he insists. “At a time when America's kind of on the verge of panicking about the situation it finds itself in, you've got to be really careful.”
ABC News got caught last fall airing footage of a Kentucky gun range and claiming it was footage of “slaughter in Syria” between Kurds and Turkish military forces. That swapped footage, which supposedly mistook Kentucky for Syria 6,200 miles away, was dismissed as a mistake, too, after airing on “World News Tonight” and on “Good Morning America” the next day.
The gun range footage, and now the Italian hospital footage, were discovered by suspecting sleuths on social media – not by the news executives themselves.
It’s easy to find examples that New York City’s hospitals are overrun with patients, and brave doctors and nurses are exhausted, so Crank asks why the journalists at CBS News turned to Italy to find video footage.
“When they are irresponsible like this, it really shows that this is political for them,” he observes. “They're desperately trying to find a way to make the President look bad.”
A recent Gallup poll found 55 percent of Americans disapproved of the way the news media was handling the virus crisis. It was the only institution or individual underwater in the poll, polling even worse than Congress.