Fox News is Harming America

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Carlos PX

A person being swarmed by misinformation on the internet. Photo courtesy of Carlos PX.

Sarah Wollney, Reporter

Fox News is very well known around the U.S. for promoting antisemitism, racism, and anti-COVID opinions, especially during former President Donald Trump’s presidency. However, while they were strongly against the COVID-19 vaccine, Fox Studios had stringent guidelines in place which required them to get it. PrimeTime hosts like Tucker Carlson, Dan Bongino, and Tomi Lauren continuously pushed a false narrative to their millions of viewers and went as far as to falsely link thousands of deaths to the vaccine.

Recently, another PrimeTime host, Neil Cavuto, tested positive for COVID-19. He hosts three shows for Fox Studios and is sometimes featured on other programs. His positive diagnoses required him to take the mandatory two weeks off and quarantine, which he gladly followed.

“While I’m somewhat stunned by this news, doctors tell me I’m lucky as well,” Cavuto said. “Had I not been vaccinated, and with all my medical issues, this would be a far more dire situation. It’s not, because I [am vaccinated] and I’m surviving this because I did. Get vaccinated, for yourself and everyone around you.”

Cavuto had been lucky to survive COVID-19. He had previously gotten open heart surgery, been treated for cancer, and was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. However, other news anchors had taken a different approach. They had never announced Cavuto’s diagnoses, which remained under wraps until he got back, and spent their on-air PrimeTime shows promoting anti-vax ideas. This isn’t to say Fox Studios & Fox Business are completely dangerous workspaces. They have stricter guidelines in place than President Joe Biden’s employer safety guidelines. It only becomes a dangerous workspace when their hosts start getting death threats for an unpopular opinion. Cavuto had received these threats because he expressed that other immunocompromised people needed to get vaccinated immediately. His words didn’t have a significant impact on lifelong viewers of Fox, as many people had already been admitted to the ICU. Some even said they wished they would have gotten themselves and their families vaccinated before they were on their deathbed.

Besides anti-vax ideas, Fox News has been promoting more hate speech against people who don’t fit their ‘classic’ American values in recent months. Hate speech’s rise doesn’t solely rely on Fox though; it’s been on the rise worldwide. They are specifically rising against members of the LBGTQIA+ community and women. One recent example is Dave Chappelle making anti-trans jokes on his Netflix comedy special. Carlson discussed it on his prime-time show, which normally averages one to two million viewers, and said that if people truly want equality, we should be able to say whatever we want, no matter how harmful it could be perceived as. By saying this in front of millions of people, hate speech becomes more normalized. Carlson’s viewers will walk around their towns and spread his hateful rhetoric because they believe it’s their first amendment right. If we truly want equality in America, we need to be respectful of people’s opinions and beliefs, not offend everyone for fun. Fox News is essentially bringing the U.S. back to the early 20th century.

However, one idea of why they keep promoting harmful ideology is for profits. Their site got more traffic during Trump’s presidency, which, as we know, was notorious for being harmful to a majority of Americans. As one of the only new sites to be in Trump’s favor, their site got most of the potential traffic and they made tons of money from each controversial story they posted. Another idea they frequently pushed onto their viewers was that the newly created COVID-19 vaccine was dangerous and presented a higher risk than the virus. They chose to promote the 9,500 deaths from the vaccine, which is about a .0022 percent death rate, instead of acknowledging the 755 thousand deaths from COVID-19, a .0162 death rate. Not only did they not act in the interest of public safety, but they also acted against their own rhetoric. As mentioned earlier, any business under Fox Entertainment has very strict rules in place to keep their employees safe, who are all vaccinated and quarantined if need be. Many of their viewers who refused to get the vaccine are dead, and many others are in critical condition in the hospital. These dangerous ideas are being spread faster than they can be stopped, resulting in people dying. In Texas alone, only eight percent of the people who died from COVID-19 were vaccinated. Whereas online groups are spreading the idea that doctors and nurses were purposely killing people as a punishment for anyone who had chosen not to get the vaccine.

These are the same people who supported the idea of the election being stolen and other odd conspiracies. With the help of hosts like Carlson and Lauren, Fox News was one of the main channels that promoted and backed their ideas up. They also allowed anti-Semitic and racist people to have a voice on their channel. For example, over the past year, Fox has been promoting the dangers of teaching Critical Race Theory (CRT) in schools without fully understanding what it is. For example, Christopher Rufo, a conservative activist featured on Fox & Friends, believed CRT was ruining American society by dividing Americans into different categories of race and had a harmful effect by basing education on the impact race had on a person’s life. They believe CRT teaches children that all white people are the oppressors and is a form of racism. Fox mentioned their idea of CRT over 1,500 times in four months. CRT is actually a way to explain how racism affects everything in our society, from healthcare to current laws. These people take personal offense when CRT is brought up because they think it’s calling them racist. They’ve aligned themselves as part of the system. Besides this, many viewers believe CRT is connected to Marxism which they also perceive as a form of communism or a liberal idea.

Somehow, Fox News has successfully brainwashed millions of Americans into believing some questionable things, all so they can gain a quick profit. This isn’t to say Fox News is the only bad station, each station leans to a particular political side, and it’s always a good idea to watch more than one if you have the time. However, I don’t believe these stations are nearly as dangerous as Fox News. For example, most other states advocated for their viewers to get vaccinated as soon as possible, and supported teaching CRT in higher-level education. If you actively watch Fox and take what they say to heart, you’re part of the problem. Even if you don’t have time to check more than one source right then, it’s always a good idea to check more when you have time to form your own opinion rather than take a harmful opinion because your favorite host said it.