To Tell the Truth: NYT & WaPo Seek to Deepen Divisions-Stir Hatred-Over Vaccine Choices

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  • 03/02/2023

To Tell the Truth is Human Events News’ press analysis series. These stories will focus on “news” being reported by either The New York Times, The Washington Post, ABC News, NBC News, or CBS News. Despite 24-hour cable broadcasts, and an untold number of internet sources, these established, mainstream platforms continue to influence the majority of American citizens and their political opinions.

The “news” generated by these press outlets is better regarded as “opinion” crafted in a way designed to discourage skepticism and critical thought on the part of the audience. To Tell the Truth will be Human Events News’ periodic effort to help address this bias and restore the skepticism necessary on the part of all Americans to maintain a free society.

As the country grows further divided on the concept of forced vaccination, those who believe “the unvaccinated” to be sub-standard human beings need look no further than America’s most popular newspapers to affirm and validate their disdain.

But why stop at disdain? The New York Times wants you to be enraged at others over their medical choices. The outlet recently ran an opinion piece by professor & economist Paul Krugman titled  “The Quiet Rage of the Responsible."

“It’s possible to have sympathy for some of the unvaccinated,” Krugman conceded, “especially workers who find it hard to take time off to get a shot and are worried about losing a day to aftereffects.”

“But there’s much less excuse for those who refuse to get their shots or wear masks for cultural or ideological reasons…”

The piece asserts plainly that readers should be growing “increasingly angry” with what he calls an “irresponsible minority” of “anti-vaxxers and anti-maskers.”

“I’m angry about their antics…And I suspect that many Americans share that anger,” Krugman writes. He calls on readers to take action, to “stop being diffident” and “call out destructive behavior for what it is.”

“Doing so may make some people feel that they’re being looked down on, he acknowledges. “But you know what? Your feelings don’t give you the right to ruin other people’s lives.”

The piece’s dismissal of individual medical decisions as not being “personal choices,” echoes another NYT opinion piece published just days earlier and eloquently titled “If You Skip the Vaccine, It Is My ‘Damn Business.”

The piece by NYT Opinion columnist Jamelle Bouie refers to individuals’ desire to keep medical information private as “a common dodge for public-facing vaccine skeptics” or “those using vaccine skepticism for their own ends,” arguing that he has the right to know the vaccination status of various individuals, offering professional athletes as an example.

“In the context of a deadly and often debilitating contagion, in which the unchecked spread of infection has consequences for the entire society, vaccination is not a personal decision,” Bouie writes. “And inasmuch as the United States has struggled to achieve herd immunity against Covid-19 through vaccination, it is because we refuse to treat the pandemic for what it is: a social problem to solve through collective action.”

Like Krugman, Bouie bashes the concept of “so-called freedom” claimed by Americans who choose to operate as individuals rather than in the name of progressive “collective action.”

Bouie scoffs at the values of American society in which he laments that “individuals are left to carry the burdens of life into the market and hope that they survive.”

Such a mindset, Bouie readers “is ill suited to human flourishing” and “practically maladaptive in the face of a pandemic,”

The collectivist propaganda continues:

“When you structure a society so that every person must be an island, you cannot then blame people when inevitably they act as if they are. If we want a country that takes solidarity seriously, we will actually have to build one.” (italics added)

The Times’ equally disturbed cousin, The Washington Post has published content equally — perhaps more blatantly — dehumanizing to Americans who have not elected to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

A WaPo Perspective piece titled  “We were patient with the unvaccinated. We can’t afford that anymore.,” by Drew Westen, encourages readers to examine the term "the unvaccinated" itself.

The term, Westen explains, "describes a kind of person,” with “negative connotations,” namely that such people are “getting one another and the rest of us sick,” as well as causing lockdowns, shuttering businesses, and “threatening our children’s safe return to school.”

This language pairs well with the outlet’s favorable coverage of an Alabama doctor who proudly announced on social media his decision to stop treating his unvaccinated patients.

“In Alabama, where the nation’s lowest vaccination rate has helped push the state closer to a record number of hospitalizations, a physician has sent a clear message to his patients: Don’t come in for medical treatment if you are unvaccinated,” WaPo reported, cooing that the doctor’s “stance highlights the state’s challenges in getting residents inoculated at a time when another wave of the pandemic has been fueled by the highly transmissible delta variant and the millions of people who remain unvaccinated.”

The outlet followed up that observation by noting that “Alabama has the lowest vaccination rate in the United States, with less than 36 percent of the population fully vaccinated, and Gov. Kay Ivey (R) recently said “ it’s time to start blaming the unvaccinated folks ” for the state’s surge in new cases and hospitalizations.’”

To Tell the Truth:  While the pieces focused on herein do come from the opinion areas of NYT and WaPo, it is still those major platforms using the power of their MSM leadership positions to guide readers to a universal conclusion without critical thought or debate.   America’s major newspapers have become platforms for a type of rhetoric formulated to sow political division and a social schism — the kind that pits neighbor against neighbor. It is likely that the use of manipulative language will only increase in severity as vaccine advocates double-down.