Tag: disinformation

Willful Ignorance

Somehow, in the past month, the number of Republicans who view SARS CoV-19 (COVID-19, ‘coronavirus’) as a threat has decreased. Commercial news needs to address the desire to be misinformed because it makes you happy. My one grandfather used to watch the weather on each of the broadcast TV channels — hit ABC at the top of the hour, CBS for the main weather forecast at 15-past, and head over to NBC for the quick recap just before the end of the show. He went with whichever forecast made him the happiest (e.g. garden getting dry? Go with the one that had a higher chance of rain tomorrow.). This was innocuous — firstly because the three forecasts didn’t have that much variance, but also because he was completely aware of what he was doing. Wasn’t like he’d refuse to water his garden today because channel 9 promised it was going to rain last night.
It seems like a lot of people have taken this approach to news in general. Without awareness of their choice, and without a willingness to concede reality. There’s no difference between willful ignorance of the impact pollution has on the environment that allows you to support harmful policies (or the disingenuous belief that the invisible hand will guide companies away from polluting actions) and willful ignorance of dangers posed by this virus. In both cases, you aren’t just harming yourself. You’re harming *everyone*.