FILE- This May 2, 2017, file photo, shows the corporate signage on the headquarters building of The New York Times in New York. The New York Times Co. reports earnings Thursday, May 3, 2018. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews, File)
As it turns out, Mara Gay does not just have a math problem. She’s got a truth problem, too. A big one.
Gay, an editorial board member at the New York Times, was widely mocked earlier this month after she and MSNBC anchor Brian Williams agreed with a tweet from writer Mekita Rivas that read “Bloomberg spent $500 million on ads. U.S. Population, 327 million. He could have given each American $1 million.”
But though that whole situation was amusing (even though Gay didn’t find it very funny), something she wrote earlier today was not amusing at all. In fact, it was downright infuriating. Especially once people learned that it was fake news.
Here’s what Gay tweeted about a conference call President Trump did this morning with governors across the country on the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak:
Trump told governors this morning they are on their own:
“Respirators, ventilators, all of the equipment — try getting it yourselves,” Mr. Trump told the governors during the conference call, a recording of which was shared with The New York Times. https://t.co/K0sont7MBc
— Mara Gay (@MaraGay) March 16, 2020
Gay’s tweet made it sound like Trump told the governors and healthcare workers in their states that they were on their own when it came to critical supplies they needed to combat the virus.
But what Gay didn’t realize is that other people actually did listen to that part of the call, and figured out that she cut off Trump’s full quote:
Do you EVER tell the truth?
Let us help you with the rest 👇🏻
“We will be backing you, but try getting it yourselves. Point of sales, much better, much more direct if you can get it yourself.”
— Dan Bongino (@dbongino) March 16, 2020
This is just an outrageous misrepresentation of a quote. You cut off right to here:
"We will be backing you, but try getting it yourselves. Point of sales, much better, much more direct if you can get it yourself"
— Matt Whitlock (@mattdizwhitlock) March 16, 2020
Disingenuous quote. Here's the full: “We will be backing you, but try getting it yourselves. Point of sales, much better, much more direct if you can get it yourself.”
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) March 16, 2020
Click bait. He said for them to not wait for Federal Funding. Advised them to not wait, but to start getting their stuff now. But go ahead and believe the paper that has hated him since he decided to run…
— Richard Sanchez (@RSanchez21) March 16, 2020
Trump made similar points this afternoon during a White House Coronavirus Task Force press briefing, correctly noting there is less red tape at the local and state levels than at the federal level. The point? Get the supplies however you can and as soon as you can, and don’t wait on us because the federal bureaucracy will slow progress.
With everything going on right now and with so much misinformation being spread, it is so critical for the media to demonstrate for once that it can be trustworthy when it comes to reporting on the latest developments, what’s being said, what’s being done and not done, etc.
Gay’s tweet – which is still up as of this writing – unfortunately is just one more example of why so many people have lost a lot of faith in journalists and the journalism profession over the years.
I understand that she’s not a fan of Republicans – that much is obvious. But at a time when there is fear, worry and panic spreading over whether or not hospitals and other healthcare facilities will have the important tools they need to help save lives, what she tweeted was not just irresponsible. It was the very definition of fake news – in the middle of a national health crisis.