COVID-19 cases in the United States are growing, but the media is selectively covering the states with the highest numbers.
On Tuesday, the United States reported there were at least 2,216 new COVID-19 deaths and approximately 178,200 new cases. Some states, despite strict coronavirus mandates and guidelines meant to prevent spread, are suffering from the most cases and deaths. Instead, however, big news seems to be focused on continuing to shame GOP politicians for refusing to completely shut down their states again.
Nearly every week in June and July, mainstream media news outlets singled out and slammed Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis for rising COVID-19 numbers as the state remained largely open and unmasked. Headlines such as “Florida shatters US record for new single-day Covid-19 cases,” “Florida’s governor just can’t seem to get it right on coronavirus,” “Florida Shatters Record For New Coronavirus Cases, Orders Bars To Close,” “Florida shatters records with over 10,000 new COVID-19 cases in single day,” “Disney World reopens even as coronavirus cases soar in Florida and across U.S.,” “In Florida, COVID-19 Death Toll Keeps Rising,” “Florida invited the nation to its reopening — then it became a new coronavirus epicenter,” ran rampant across news websites and broadcast programs.
Months after outlets such as CNN, NPR, the Washington Post, and others continually targeted Florida for increasing coronavirus cases, the corporate media ignored Illinois, which recorded 15,415 cases in just one day. That’s more than Florida ever reported in a single day, yet Florida is singled out for negative news attention.
“This is despite Illinois’ population being 40% lower,” Youyang Gu, creator of a COVID-19 projection website reported.
While Illinois continues to see climbing cases and deaths, outlets such as MSNBC, NPR, and CNN are choosing to hyper-focus on states with Republican leaders such as Gov. Kristi Noem of South Dakota, who have chosen different COVID-19 mitigation techniques.
Instead of noting these significant trends in Illinois, CNN chose to publish another article on Florida, focusing on the fact that case numbers continue to rise after reopening even though daily new deaths in the state are down.
While Illinois enacted mask mandates, closed restaurants, and discouraged people from holiday travel and gatherings, Gu notes that the state is still experiencing an exceptional amount of cases and deaths per capita compared to states with much higher populations such as Florida, California, and Texas.
“We hear a lot of the talk about how the deaths in Florida were ‘preventable’. What about the ones in Illinois?” Gu questioned.
“I don’t want to spark a political debate here. I just hope that more people can recognize that the news we consume online can be inherently biased. They often serve to fuel division (and clicks),” he wrote.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jordan Davidson is a staff writer at The Federalist. She graduated from Baylor University where she majored in political science and minored in journalism.Photo Covid, mask, testing, coronavirus, ppe, nurse