The Hidden Agenda #31 🕵️🔍

 ALAMY

ALAMY

What

We're back with #31 of our Hidden Agenda series. The idea is to expose the hidden agenda in stories that are mostly being reported on one side of the conversation.

And

If you have time, reading the articles in this segment will better help you understand the point we're trying to make.


Left Topic: Support for Tommy Robinson in the US

CNN: A jailed UK far-right activist has gained some big-name US supporters


Summary: A local Democratic lawmaker kneeled during the Pledge of Allegiance at a town meeting to protest Trump's comments during his recent press conference with Putin in Finland.

Hidden agenda: Taking knees during national ceremonies is an ongoing, serious problem.

Indicators in the article/segment:

  • This story was on the front page of the FoxNews.com homepage 
  • Title says she was “slammed”

What's missing:

  • The small town meeting appeared to have 4 people in it
  • The only person possibly "slamming" her in the article is the Republican gubernatorial candidate for Connecticut, being interviewed by Fox News
  • Does Fox News reporting on this so loudly make it more lucrative for potential protestors? 

 

Summary: Controversial right-wing activist Tommy Robinson, jailed for breaking Britain's strict rules on the reporting of ongoing court trials, has started receiving support from powerful Americans, including Steve Bannon and US gov't officials.

Hidden agenda: There is a dangerous current of far-right acceptance in the top offices of the US.

Indicators in the article:

  • The title implies numerous, powerful supporters for Robinson’s ideas
  • Mentions Steve Bannon, Sam Brownback, Donald Trump Jr., and Rep. Paul Gosar of Arizona in the article

What's missing:

  • There is no evidence that State Department official Sam Brownback is a supporter -  just that he raised the case in a meeting
  • Donald Trump Jr. and Rep. Paul Gosar support his release from a free speech perspective - there is no evidence that they support his specific views
  • This article does not prove a wave of powerful support in the U.S.

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