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They Lied About a Gang Rape…and Now COVID

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When it comes to music and movies, Rolling Stone is pretty good. They should probably just stick to their roots as a music journalism venture. Being an entertainment magazine is also fine. There's plenty of music and movie news to fill the pages. And people can still be biased. They can still include their culture swipes at conservative America. I don't care. We should all expect these outlets to carry that tile anyway. Then again, seldom does a publication eat buckshot so brutally twice in less than 10 years. I mean, you cannot make this up. Who looks down the barrel of a loaded shotgun twice and then gets blasted—twice? That'll be Rolling Stone. You'd think they'd learn after the University of Virginia fiasco. You'd think they'd learn from the libel lawsuit from that circus. Apparently not. This publication lied about a gang rape and now has lied about COVID.

Granted, the COVID story, while a bad one, isn't as bad as the UVA gang rape that never happened. Still, the errors that led to both stories being outright hoaxes are the same. They don't check their sources. Let's go to the publication's COVID hysteria piece that was grade-A trash that resonated loudly among the liberal media echo chamber. 

To refresh, there was a media-driven hoax about ivermectin that's an anti-parasite drug commonly used to treat roundworm infections and river blindness. It's reportedly been tossed around as a treatment for COVID. It's not officially, but a simple analysis cannot be done since the liberal media does what they do best: overreact and make stuff up. For a few days, we had this tall tale of rural hospitals being awash with ivermectin overdoses. Rolling Stone was the starting quarterback on this one—which led to this correction: 

Update: One hospital has denied Dr. Jason McElyea’s claim that ivermectin overdoses are causing emergency room backlogs and delays in medical care in rural Oklahoma, and Rolling Stone has been unable to independently verify any such cases as of the time of this update.

So, the whole story is fake news. The magazine couldn't verify any cases. Is this a joke? 

"Gunshot victims left waiting as horse dewormer overdoses overwhelm Oklahoma hospitals, doctor says" was what was originally tweeted out by Rolling Stone. 

The inability to verify seems to be an issue that's nagging at this liberal outlet. Whether it's a pandemic of rape on college campuses, they fail. Let's go back to "A Rape on Campus," which was first exalted as an ace piece on the issue. Sabrina Rubin Erdely was just so brave for writing about it until it fell apart within days. Remember that the "Jackie" was gang-raped by "Drew" and his pals at some fraternity party. One of the many issues is that "Drew" didn't exist. The photo of him was of a person that wasn't even a student at UVA. He was a high school classmate of Jackie. Oh, and his name appeared to be "Haven Monahan." Rolling Stone did not interview Jackie's three friends who saw her the night of the alleged attack—Erdely should have. Folks, the level of Rolling Stone's failure here was so bad and so deep that CNN had to take part in cleaning up the mess:

On a fall night two years ago, Jackie, the alleged victim of a brutal gang rape, recounted her story in vivid detail to two friends. She recalled the assault for Ryan Duffin and Alex Stock on picnic tables at the quaint University of Virginia campus.


Duffin and Stock told CNN they remember a starkly different account than what appeared in Rolling Stone. Their version cast doubt over whether the man who allegedly orchestrated the attack even existed.

“I mean there are definitely some major holes in the story,” said Stock, who also met Jackie through a mutual friend at summer orientation. “I think that that was pretty clear in the Rolling Stone piece… It was almost too perfect of a story.”

Jackie’s lawyer declined to comment to CNN for this article.


Duffin and Stock said they were never contacted by the magazine; instead, the writer portrayed them through Jackie’s eyes.

T. Rees Shapiro, who was then an education reporter for The Washington Post, actually did what Erdely should have done when the story collapsed. He tried to verify everything that was alleged. Core pieces simply did not reflect reality. The final gut punch was the Columbia School of Journalism's 13,000-word evisceration of this piece (via NYT): 

The first misstep during the reporting process, the Columbia report said, was that Ms. Erdely did not seek to independently contact three of Jackie’s friends, who were quoted in the piece, using pseudonyms, expressing trepidation at the idea of Jackie telling the authorities that she had been assaulted. The quotes came from Jackie’s recollection of the conversation. Those friends later cast doubt on Jackie’s story in interviews with The Washington Post and denied saying the words Rolling Stone had attributed to them. The three told the report’s authors that they would have made the same denials to Rolling Stone if they had been contacted.

Rolling Stone, the report said, also did not provide the fraternity with enough information to adequately respond to questions from the magazine. Later, when the article had been published, the fraternity, Phi Kappa Psi, said it did not host a function on the weekend Jackie had specified.

And the magazine failed to identify Jackie’s attacker, the report said. It was content to give him a pseudonym, Drew, when Jackie resisted Ms. Erdely’s request to help find him. The fraternity, The Post and the police have been unable to find anyone who matches Jackie’s description of Drew.

The reporting errors by Ms. Erdely were compounded by insufficient scrutiny and skepticism from editors, the report said. And the fact-checking process relied heavily on four hours of conversations with Jackie.

Everything was wrong. EVERYTHING. 

And yes, you notice that a lot of liberal outlets called out Rolling Stone for this piece of sensationalist garbage. This isn't the first time. The national media got a ton of egg on their face over the Duke Lacrosse rape story that also was a piece of fiction. They failed then. What makes you think they'll learn, especially now when intentionally lying is rewarded and often protected?

Key editors initially kept their jobs after Rolling Stone's UVA trip-up. Erdely was originally kept on staff. And the magazine's apology was so botched that you could see how "A Rape on Campus" went to print with all the calamities that rested within the text. It was a classic example of when the liberal moral superiority complex is owned totally by the facts—facts they ignored so they could manufacture a story that fed into their narrative. 

Now, we have this parasite COVID story that very much fell victim to the same practices that torpedoed the UVA story. Yes, the latter brought lawsuits. Yes, the latter ruined Erdley's career as she was found guilty of libel against then-UVA Associate Dean Nicole Eramo. But both stories show why the media's trust numbers are in the toilet. They don't care if they lie. They intentionally do so. For Rolling Stone, maybe they should just leave the news business entirely. 

For everyone else, well, they have their moments—no doubt. A broken clock is right twice a day, though that still doesn't negate the fact that the quasi-state media complex that always helps Democrats is an enemy of the people. This industry can't report rape in America accurately. The same goes with COVID now. It's an evolutionary journey that many of us aren't shocked to see. 



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