While at the University of Chicago on Wednesday, CNN’s Brian Stelter was confronted by a freshman about the outlet’s involvement in pushing disinformation.
Stelter was confronted by Christopher Phillips, a college freshman at the university, at the “Disinformation and the Erosion of Democracy” conference.
Phillips, a writer at the newspaper The Chicago Thinker, said “You’ve all spoken extensively about Fox News being a purveyor of disinformation, but CNN is right up there with them”.
“They pushed the Russian collusion hoax, they pushed the Jussie Smollett hoax, they smeared Justice Kavanaugh as a rapist and they also smeared Nick Sandmann as a white supremacist and, yes, they dismissed the Hunter Biden laptop as pure Russian disinformation,” he continued.
“With mainstream corporate journalists being little more than apologists and cheerleaders for the regime, is it time to finally declare the canon of journalist ethic is dead or no longer operative?” Phillips asked.
“All the mistakes of the mainstream media and CNN, in particular, seem to magically all go in one direction. Are we expected to believe that this is all just some sort of random coincidence or is there something else behind it?” he added.
“Too bad it’s time for lunch,” Stelter joked. “I think my honest answer to you, and I’ll come over and talk in more detail after this, is that I think you’re describing a different channel than the one I watch. But I understand that it is a popular right-wing narrative about CNN”.
“I think it’s important, when talking about shared reality and democracy, all these networks all these news outlets have to defend democracy. And when they screw up, admit it,” Stelter said.
Avoiding Phillips’ line of questioning, Stelter then brings up CNN assisting Fox News in Ukraine following the attack on the Fox News team.
“And with regards to the regime, I think you mean President Biden? The last time I spoke with a Biden aide, we yelled at each other. So that’s the reality of the news business, that people don’t see, that people don’t hear,” he continued.
CNN and other liberal networks are famous for pushing the Russian collusion narrative throughout Trump’s presidency, fueling claims that Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh was a gang rapist, and portraying student Nicholas Sandmann as being a racially-motivated aggressor towards a Native American man.